Send to

Choose Destination
J Health Soc Policy. 2003;16(4):1-26.

The global problems of child malnutrition and mortality in different world regions.

Author information

Department of Sociology, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, UAE.


The study of child mortality occupies a special place in the field of demographic research, since it represents the negative component of population growth. Also, the world food problem has become a familiar topic since the end of the World War II. The idea that population growth will sometime in the future outrun food supplies and universal starvation occurs. This study deals with what happened in global and regional variations regarding the child malnutrition and mortality rates. The main objective of the study is to explain and to explore the effect of the social, demographic, economic and health factors on child malnutrition and mortality rates among different regions in the globe. The study includes ten regions of the whole world compared to other studies that covered only one or two regions. Data were collected from various sources. The sample involved 191 countries. These countries divided by regions of world as following. East Southern Africa, West Africa, East Asia and Pacific, South Asia, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, Europe, Middle East, North Africa, North America, and South America. The results of descriptive analysis show that the highest mean rate of child malnutrition was found in South Asia region (57 children per 100), while the smallest mean rate was found in Europe region (just 1 child per 100). In West Africa region, the average of child mortality rate per 1000, 172 children, was the highest among all regions in the world, while in Europe was found to be 14 children per 1000. The results of correlation coefficients reveal that there were positive associations between illiteracy rate, unemployment, poverty, fertility rate, family size, food consumption, maternal mortality rate, population per physician, and child malnutrition and mortality in the whole world regions. Some regions have strong significant associations, such as Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, and Americas, and other were non-significant association, such as Europe, Middle East, and North Africa. The results suggest that there were negative associations between GNP, household income, protein consumption, and child malnutrition and mortality in all world regions except Europe and Central Asia regions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center