PREDICTORS OF INFANT-SURVIVAL PRACTICES AMONG MOTHERS ATTENDING PAEDIATRIC CLINICS IN IJEBU-ODE, OGUN STATE, NIGERIA
Despite concerted global efforts made towards infant-survival, infant death lingers as a huge problem in developing countries. Environmental and personal-level factors ranging from inadequacies of healthcare providers to poor support from family members and poor practices by nursing mothers are assumed to have accounted for this situation. This study aimed at considering predictors of infant-survival practices among mothers whose infants attend paediatric clinics in Ijebu-ode, Ogun state, Nigeria. A cross-sectional survey design was adopted. Data was collected from three hundred and eighty-six nursing mothers attending paediatric clinics who were selected through stratified sampling technique. Self-administered questionnaires consisting of 38-items on demographic data, health-literacy counsels and instructions received, social-support received, self-efficacy to adhere to infant-survival instructions, and infant-survival practices were developed for data collection. Responses from participants were transformed into rating scales for each variable. Linear regression analysis was conducted to give statistical responses to the research questions and hypotheses. Decision rules for test of hypotheses were set at 5% level of significance.
Participants had a mean age of 29.79±5.84years. Majority (81.6%) were married while 15.5%, 1.8%, 0.5% and 0.5% were single, separated widowed and divorced respectively. Self-employed participants were 58.0%, 18.9% of them worked with either private organisations or were civil servants while 14.8% were unemployed. Among participants were 65.3% Christians, 31.6% Muslims and 3.1% traditional believers. Although, 10.6% were Igbos, 3.1% were Hausas and 3.4% belonged to other ethnic groups, participants were predominantly Yorubas (83.90%). Also, 42.5% of them had attained tertiary education, 42.5% had attained secondary education, 9.6% had only primary education while 5.4% were uneducated. One-third of respondents (33.4%) had more than two children, 34.5% had two children and 32.1% had one child. It was also revealed that 11.90% of participants had lost one or more infants at one point in time before the survey was conducted. Participants had mean scores of 11.41±3.91 on level of health-literacy counsels received which was measured on a 19-point rating scale, 10.61± 3.67 on social-support received measured on a 17-point rating scale, 16.61±4.56 on self-efficacy which was measured on a 24-point rating scale, and 16.53±4.71 on self-reported infant-survival practices measured on a 21-point rating scale. The study found a significant relationship between health-literacy and infant-survival practices (R=0.320; R2=0.102; P˂0.05), and between social-support received and infant-survival practices (R=0.401; R2=0.161; P˂0.05). Self-efficacy to adhere to infant-survival instructions was the major predictor variable of self-reported infant-survival practices (R=4.66; R2=0.217; P˂0.05). The study concluded that participants had average levels of health-literacy, social-support, self-efficacy and infant-survival practices. It suggests that efforts be made by health care providers to instruct pregnant women and strengthen them on activities required for the survival of their infants. Family members of nursing mothers should also be informed about the benefits of giving support to them.
Keywords: Health-Literacy, Social-Support, Self-Efficacy, Infant-Survival Practices and Nursing mothers