Determinants of the Birth Weight among the New Born Babies in Uganda: Case Study of Central Uganda
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Background Birth weight is the first weight of the fetus or newborn obtained after birth, preferably measured within the first hour of life before significant postnatal weight loss has occurred. Low birth weight (LBW) by international agreement has been defined as a birth weight of less than 2500 grams while those above 2500 grams are considered to be of normal weight (WHO, 2014). According to the (WHO data that was published in May, 2014) low births weight reached 12383 deaths or 3.86% of the total deaths in Uganda. The deaths adjusted births rates is 15.8% of population this ranks Uganda as 46 in the world. Low-birth weight babies (% of births) in Uganda were at 11.8 %, (WHO, 2014). Objectives To assess the socioeconomic determinants of the births weight of the new born babies in central Uganda, To establish the relationship between the demographic factors of mothers and the births weight of the new born babies, To assess the relationship between mother’s behavior and the weight of the new born baby. Findings Wealth index, highest level of education marital, place of residence and sex of the baby and the weight of the baby, that is to say all the above mentioned variables had a probability value of 0.000 (p=0.000),while other variables do not show any significant relationship with births weight. Conclusions Mothers with no education are most likely to give birth to babies with low births weight. Single motherhood is positively associated with low births weight of the new born babies. Urban women are most likely to give births to babies with normal weight. High Income is positively related to low births weight of babies in western Uganda. Mothers aged 40 years and above are more likely to give births to babies with low births weight. Mothers who smoke while they are pregnant are most likely to give births to children with low weight. Recommendations Organizations like ministry of health, Uganda and the government of Uganda should ensure that all the areas rural and urban have good healthy facilities in order to cater for disparities between urban and rural areas. Efforts should be made to integrate malaria campaigns in health services in order to increase the prevention of malaria in order to promote child weight. The government of Uganda should ensure that people are educated most especially women in order to increase the knowledge of mothers on the importance of antenatal care services.