Prevalence and associated factors of neonatal mortality in North Gondar Zone, Northwest Ethiopia

  • B Kebede
  • A Gebeyehu
  • H R Sharma
  • S Yifru


Background: Childhood mortality is often used as a broad indicator of the social development and health conditions of a country. Updated information on neonatal mortality does thus influence policy, improve services and lead to better health for newborns.
Objective: To assess the prevalence of neonatal mortality and associated factors in North Gondar Zone, Ethiopia.
Methods: Community based cross-sectional study was carried out from November 2009 to January 2010 in North Gondar Zone. Multi-stage sampling was adopted to get respondents and data was collected using structured questionnaires from 3600 mothers who gave live birth during the year 2005 to 2009.
Results: Neonatal mortality was found to be 214 out of 4888 live births with the rate of 43.8 per 1000 live births. The number of pregnancies the women, had (AOR =3.76: 95% CI, 2.73- 5.20), maternal morbidity (AOR =5.43: 95% CI, 2.90-10.17) and neonatal illness (AOR = 3.68: 95% CI, 2.41-5.62) were strongly associated with neonatal mortality. Small size neonates at birth were 2 times more likely to die compared with medium sized ones. Compared with illiterate mothers, secondary and above secondary educated mothers reduced the risk of neonatal deaths by 85% (0.04, 0.51) and 90% (0.01, 0.94), respectively.
Conclusion: Neonatal mortality was very high when compared with the national data of Ethiopia. Strategies to improve female education, reducing maternal morbidity, limiting the number of pregnancies, early intervention for neonatal illness, prevention and intervention in low birth weight neonates are recommended to reduce neonatal mortality.

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eISSN: 1021-6790