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Spatio-temporal modelling of under-five mortality in Lesotho using demographic and health survey data

Mthobisi Mxolisi Zondi
Henry G Mwambi
Sileshi Fanta Melesse


Background: Lesotho is in the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) region which aims to reduce the under-five mortality (U5M) to the average of 25 deaths per 1000 live births by the end of 2030 under the sustainable development goals (SDGs) initiative by the United Nations

Methodology: This paper makes use of the Lesotho Demographic and Health Survey (LDHS dataset, which focuses on female reproductive ages 15-49 and male reproductive ages 15-54 The spatio-temporal models were used in this study to investigate how the proposed covariates change over time.

Results: The results showed that children who were breastfed had a lower odd of death compared to children who were not breastfed, children from more educated mothers had significantly lower odds of U5M compared to those from less educated mothers. Having a larger number of children under the age of five also contributed significantly to an increased risk of U5M. The likelihood of U5M increased with age.

Conclusion: The study recommends that mothers of under-five children be educated about breastfeeding and encouraged to use contraception in order to postpone birth and reduce parity. Rural development should be prioritized through improved primary health care; and public health services should be made more accessible to rural residents.

Keywords: Spatio-temporal modelling; under-five mortality; Integrated Laplace nested approximation; Lesotho demographic and health survey data.

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1729-0503
print ISSN: 1680-6905