Impact of infant and child mortality on fertility in Kenya
Ngure, Njuguna E
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The present unprecedented growth of population around the world has made it imperative to understand the causes and look for cure of this growth. Fertility and mortality are the two important factors that contribute to this growth. An important demographic question that has been widely investigated recently is the degree to which changes in infant and child mortality can be expected to induce changes in fertility rates in developing countries. This study tries to answer this question by investigation the impact of infant and child mortality on fertility in Kenya. This study utilizes 1998 Kenya Demographic Health Survey (1998 KDHS) data Conducted between February 1998 and August 1998. A study sample of women aged 35 years and above excluding those who have never been married and those who had never given birth was taken from this data. Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) and Two Stage Least Squares (2SLS) statistical methods were used to estimate direct effects of infant/child death(s) on fertility and replacement rate respectively. The motivariate analysis results showed that, there exist direct effects of infant/child death(s) on fertility. Women who experienced infant/child death(s) had a higher number of children ever born. The result also showed that the replacement rate for the period of 1993 to 1998 was 0.27. This was lower compared to that of the period 1989 to 1993 which was 0.3 using Two Stage Least Squares method . In the differentials, replacement rate was positively related with education and Infant/Child death(s) among women with no education was not significant in explaining fertility. When the analysis was carried out by type of place of residence, replacement rate was higher in rural areas than in urban areas. Infant/child death(s) was found to be insignificant in explaining fertility in urban areas. There was no significant difference in replacement when the analysis was carried out between low and high mortality regions. For policy concerns, the study recommends programmes aimed at reducing infant and mortality should be integrated into programmes geared towards fertility reduction. This can be done by also promoting programmes that promote child nutrition and child care. Other programmes promoting girl child education (especially higher education), contraceptive use and age at first marriage should be implemented and strengthen those that are already existing. For further research, the study recommends further research on effects of School dropout on fertility and further investigations on Minimum Distance Estimation Model on Kenyan data.
CitationMasters of Science in Population Studies
University of NairobiPopulation Studies and Research Institute