Anaemia is a widespread public health concern. It is estimated that globally 47 percent of young children are anaemic (WHO, 2005). In children anaemia can impair development and increase susceptibility to infectious diseases. The lack of sufficient food rich in iron and other micronutrients are the commonest cause of anaemia. Underweight, a measure of short and long term malnutrition may reflect poor feeding practices or recent episodes of illness.
We investigated the link between children's nutritional status (underweight) and anaemia. This is a cross-sectional study of 3157 children age 6-54 months from the Democratic Rep. of Congo. Initially, 24% of children were underweight (weight-for-age bellow -2 standard deviation) and 74% were anaemic.
It is suggested that anaemia is significantly associated with children nutritional status (underweight) and most of the risk factors associated with anaemia are also found to be related with children weight-for-age. These include bed net use, breastfeeding, succeeding birth interval, source of drinking water and wealth quintiles.
Paying a close attention to these common socioeconomic factors associated with both children's nutritional status and anaemia can improve children's health in the Dem. Rep of Congo.
Keywords: Anaemia; Weight-for-age; Socioeconomic factors; Democratic Rep. of Congo
Biography: 2000-BSc. Computer sciences, Kinshasa Business school; 2005 - BSc. Economics, University of Kinshasa; 2009 - MSc. Social Statistics, Southampton University; 2009-present - PhD. Social Statistics, Southampton university.