ABSTRACT: A total of 1327 households were surveyed in Kabul province, Afghanistan to evaluate child immunization coverage and its association with distance to health facilities, attendance at antenatal care, the place of delivery and contact by outreach activity. The proportion of fully immunized children, those who had received at least 1 dose of BCG, 3 doses of DPT, and 1 dose of measles vaccine, was 84.5% in the city centre and 60.7% in the rural area. Fully immunized status was positively associated with close proximity to a health facility (odds ratio [OR]=1.92, [95%CI, 1.08, 3.39]), and attendance at antenatal care (OR=1.39, [95%CI, 1.00, 1.93]) in the city centre, and outreach contact (OR=11.6, [95%CI, 6.92, 19.4]) in the rural area after adjustment for demography, socio-economic factors, participation in health education and experiences of hardship. Attendance at antenatal care in the rural area (OR=1.91, [95%CI, 1.35, 2.72]), and institutional delivery in the city centre and rural area (OR=2.83, [95%CI, 1.20, 6.71]; OR=2.17, [95%CI, 1.01, 4.64], respectively) were positively associated with antigen specific coverage. Improving multiple community conditions including health-care provision and socio-economic factors through close partnership among various sectors promotes the immunization program.
Vaccine 06/2009; 27(21):2823-9. · 3.77 Impact Factor
ABSTRACT: The present study was performed to assess, beyond socio-economic factors, independent associations between the health and nutritional status of children under 5 years old and (1) family behavioural factors related to women with regard to child care and (2) war-related experience by the household of hardships in Afghanistan.
The subjects were all children born during the previous 5 years from 1400 households in Kabul Province, Afghanistan and were selected by multistage sampling in March 2006. Height and weight measurements of the children and culturally sensitive interviews with their mothers were conducted by household visits. Child mortality, morbidity and nutritional status were evaluated. Four areas were assessed as variables for family behavioural factors related to women: education of mothers, child marriage of the mothers, maternal autonomy in obtaining healthcare for children and preference for a female physician. Hardships experienced by the family were examined by determining their satisfaction of basic material needs and by any experience of being forced to leave a preferred residence.
A total of 2474 children from 1327 households completed the examinations and interviews; among them, 101 children were deceased by the time of the interview visits. Diarrhoea (32.5%) and acute respiratory infection (41.0%) were common child health problems and both emaciation (12.4%) and linear growth retardation (39.9%) were prevalent. Regardless of the influence of economic, demographic, family behavioural or hardships experience factors, a lack of maternal autonomy (79.1%) was associated with the occurrence of acute respiratory infection (odds-ratio = 1.72; 95% confidence interval = 1.23, 2.40), and linear growth retardation of children (odds-ratio = 1.38; 95% confidence interval = 1.01, 1.90); a lack of education of the mother (71.7%) and child marriage of the mothers (18.3%) were associated with diarrhoea (odds-ratio = 1.84; 95% confidence interval = 1.40, 2.41; odds-ratio = 1.46; 95% confidence interval = 1.08, 1.96, respectively); a shortage of basic material needs (59.1%) was associated with diarrhoea (odds-ratio = 1.35; 95% confidence interval = 1.08, 1.68); and migration inside the country (52.9%) was associated with underweight children (odds-ratio = 2.48; 95% confidence interval = 1.13, 5.44).
A lack of education of the mothers, child marriage, lack of maternal autonomy, shortage of basic material needs and internal displacement showed independent and significant negative associations with child health and nutritional variables in this country that has experienced a long period of conflict.
BMC Public Health 09/2008; 8:301. · 2.00 Impact Factor
ABSTRACT: In the period following wars and other forms of armed conflict, health and quality of life of mothers is a major concern as they have the closest contact with children. The present study was performed to examine the impact of exposure to events related to armed conflicts on post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among women raising children, and to identify factors that alleviate the negative consequences of exposure to traumatic events.
A structured interview survey was conducted in Kabul Province, Afghanistan, in 2006. The subjects were the mothers of children less than 5 years old randomly selected from 1400 households in Kabul Province, Afghanistan. Symptoms of PTSD were assessed according to the criteria of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV). Exposure to traumatic events related to armed conflict, experience of hardship with regard to basic needs, resources that the subjects seek for mental health support, and socioeconomic variables were evaluated. Logistic regression analysis was performed to determine the association between PTSD symptoms and predictor variables.
The prevalence rate of PTSD among 1172 women participated in this study was 29.8%. The most prevalent symptom was arousal (74.8%), followed by re-experiencing (54.9%) and avoidance (33.7%). The prevalence rate of PTSD symptoms among subjects who reported having experienced at least one event related to armed conflict (52.7%) was significantly higher than that among those who reported no such experiences (9.6%). Experience of food shortage was independently associated with PTSD. Seeking support for mental health was related to lower prevalence of PTSD symptoms among those who reported no direct experience of events related to armed conflict. However, no such relationship was observed with PTSD symptoms among those who reported having direct experience of events related to armed conflict.
Direct exposure to traumatic events was significantly associated with PTSD symptoms among women raising children. For those who had experienced armed conflict-related events, food security mitigated the occurrence of PTSD symptoms; however, support seeking behavior did not show a significant mitigating influence on PTSD. Means to alleviate the negative influence of exposure to armed conflicts on the quality of life of women should be developed from the viewpoint of quality of mental health support and avoidance of material hardship.
Health and Quality of Life Outcomes 02/2008; 6:29. · 2.11 Impact Factor