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Differentials in treatment seeking for common childhood illnesses in Tanzania: Does economic status matter?

Sumit Mazumdar, International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS)
Papiya Guha Mazumdar, International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS)

Health system of Sub-Saharan Africa is characterized by sub-optimal use of health facilities for common childhood illnesses, however few studies have examined the reasons of underutilization. The main aim of the present paper is to examine the extent of differentials in treatment seeking for common childhood illnesses in Tanzania, and observe the role of economic status in influencing provider choice. We have used the Tanzania Demographic and Health Survey 2004 (TDHS 2004) and applied binary and multinomial logit models to study the predicted probabilities of provider-specific, treatment seeking choices and observe the influence of economic status in influencing the outcomes. The paper finds higher burden of diarrhoea and fever on the poorer households and a definite economic gradient in treatment seeking for childhood illnesses in Tanzania. While for diarrhoea, the effect is moderate, for fevers, cough/ARI, economic status has a strong positive influence on the probability of seeking treatment.

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Presented in Poster Session 4