Re-assessing childhood mortality declines in Kenya: In search of explanations

Anne Khasakhala, University of Nairobi
Alfred A. Otieno, Population Studies and Research Institute
Andrew Imbwaga, Kenya National Bureau of Statistics
Zena Lyaga, University of Nairobi
George Odwe

Kenya has experienced dramatic declines in childhood mortality in recent years. The recent 2008/9 KDHS showed a reversal in the 1990 and early 2000 levels and differentials. The under-five mortality declined by 36 percent from 115 deaths per thousand to 74 deaths per thousand while the infant mortality declined by 32 percent from 77 to 52 per thousand within a period of five 5 to 6 years. For the first time infant mortality was higher in urban areas compared to rural areas while infants for mothers with no education was less likely to die compared to women with some slight primary level of education. Are the observed rapid changes in mortality real or an artifact of data? The paper aims at exploring this phenomenon in search of explanations.

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Presented in Session 45: Determinants and trends in child mortality