Poster Topical Area: Global Nutrition

Location: Hall D

Poster Board Number: 584

P12-073 - Acute Malnutrition, Livestock, and Water: Results from a Four Year Panel Study in Sila Region, Chad

Sunday, Jun 10
8:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Objective: The objective of this paper is to use panel data to show the child, household and village level characteristics associated with child weight for height z-score (WHZ) status and changes in that status in Sila, Chad from 2012-2015.

Methods: A two-stage randomized cluster sampling strategy was used to select approximately 1400 households across 69 villages in the Sila Region of Chad. The same households were then followed for three years (2012, 2014, and 2015), collecting data on village, household, and child (6-59 months) level characteristics, including anthropometry. A fixed and random effects model was used to identify variables (and changes in those variables) that were significantly associated with child WHZ status (and changes in that status). Given that the same households and not the same children were followed the outcome variable used in the regression modeling is the minimum child WHZ for the household. In addition, focus groups and key informant interviews were conducted in 2013, 2014, and 2015 in a selection of villages.

Results: Utilization of a borehole was significantly and negatively correlated with WHZ. Households that switched from not having a borehole to having a borehole significantly improved their child's WHZ. In addition, a significant and negative correlation was identified between village cattle density and child WHZ, even though individual livestock ownership had a significant and positive association with child WHZ. Despite poorer performance on other indicators of wellbeing (access to services and asset wealth) and bigger cattle herds, villages with households with a history of pastoralism had children with better WHZ.

Conclusion: Child WHZ in the research catchment area in Chad was correlated with potable water access, cattle density, and livelihood strategy. The findings suggest the likelihood of contamination from Cryptosporidium Parvum, an enteric pathogen associated with environmental enteropathy and transmitted from cattle to humans through water. The results also highlight a possible role of indigenous livestock water management practices utilized by former pastoralist populations in preventing water contamination by livestock, and thus potentially child acute malnutrition.

Funding Source: Irish Aid, European Union, DFID

CoAuthors: Helen Young – Tufts University; Anne Radday – Tufts University

Anastasia Marshak

Researcher/PhD Candidate
Tufts University
Melrose, Massachusetts