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Background: Although Lesotho has one of the highest childhood mortality levels in Southern Africa, there has been limited research on the link between type of birth attendant and neonatal mortality in Lesotho. This study examined the relationship between type of birth attendant and neonatal mortality while controlling for socio-demographic characteristics of mothers in Lesotho
Methods: The study used data from the children’s file of 2014 Lesotho Demographic and Health Survey data. Kaplan-Meier method was used to estimate neonatal mortality rate and Cox proportional hazard regression model was used to assess the association between type of birth attendant and neonatal mortality.
Results: Result shows that 5.3% of all births attended to by non-SBAs resulted into neonatal mortality compared to 2.8% of those attended to by SBA. Result further shows that regardless of socio-demographic characteristics, the risks of neonatal mortality were significantly higher with non-SBAs compared to SBA in Lesotho (HR: 2.00, CI: 1.31-3.06).
Conclusion: The risk of neonatal mortality is two times higher among children delivered by Non-SBA. Scale-up in access and uptake of SBA is recommended in Lesotho. Thus, Policy on scale-up access to SBA at delivery at no costs need to be put in place.
Keywords: Neonatal; mortality; Lesotho.