Socioeconomic factors affecting Childhood Mortality in Ethiopia: An Instrumental Variable Approach

The main causes of death in most early childhood mortality are diseases which are preventable and curable. This is the reason why childhood mortality is treated as a development issue rather than a simple health problem. Ethiopia is among the places where the rate of such deaths is high, which is an indication of the poor quality of life that its people have. It is important to study the important factors of childhood mortality and design intervention in order to improve the situation. This study attempts to identify the important factors of childhood deaths by using the Ethiopian Demographic and Health Survey conducted in 2011. We have fitted an instrumental variable probit model to identify the structural relation between childhood mortality and maternal, child specific and household related variables. Maternal education, maternal age at first birth, total number of children ever born, access to facilities like toilet, safe water, radio and electricity turned out to be inversely related to childhood mortality while boys, multiple births, dirt floor houses and the use of pollutant cooking fuels are related positively.