Impact of Socioeconomic Factors on Neonatal Sepsis in Jos, Nigeria
AbstractBackground: Neonatal sepsis is very prevalent in sub-saharan Africa and contributes up to 69% to neonatal mortality in Nigeria and other parts of Africa. The objective of this study was to determine the impact of the predominant socio-economic factors that may contribute to neonatal sepsis in this environment.
Methodology: The study was a cross-sectional study conducted in Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH), Jos, North Central, Nigeria. Clinical and demographic data were collected from mothers, care givers and case notes of 218 neonates enrolled into the study by means of a structured interviewer administered questionnaire. Data collected were analyzed by EPI Info statistical package. Biological samples were also collected from the neonates and processed by standard methods in the microbiology laboratory of JUTH.
Results: Bacteria were isolated in 34.4% of the neonates studied. The most common isolates were Klebsiella pneumonia, Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli. Delivery at home had the highest percentage of culture proven sepsis (52.2%). Mothers with no formal education and those with only primary education also had high proportions of culture proven sepsis (41.1% and 58.8% respectively). Place of domicile, level of education of mother and poor feeding were factors that contributed significantly to neonatal sepsis by odds ratio.
Conclusion: The findings show that socioeconomic factors have a significant impact on neonatal sepsis. An improved standard of living, education and empowerment of women and increased provision of basic social amenities will go a long way in reducing the morbidity and mortality of neonatal sepsis in our environment.