Effect of mother’s migration on under-two mortality in Kenya

  • Emmanuel B. Otieno Onyango Center for Disease Control and Kenya Medical Research Institute (CDC/KEMRI)
  • Ann Khasakhala Population Studies & Research Institute (PSRI),University of Nairobi
  • A.T. Agwanda Population Studies & Research Institute (PSRI),University of Nairobi
  • Murungaru Kimani Population Studies & Research Institute (PSRI),University of Nairobi
  • Bonface K’Oyugi National Coordinating Agency for Population Development (NCAPD)


This study examines the effect of mothers’ migration status controlling for other proximate factors (socio-economic, environmental and bio-demographic characteristics) on under two mortality in Kenya. Data used were drawn from 2003 Kenya Demographic Health Survey with focus on infants and children below two years in age. A total of 5949 infants and children born five years before the survey are used in the analysis. Cox proportional hazard model is used to assess the relative effect of the migration status (migrant or non-migrant) of the mother on survival rates controlling for other explanatory variables. The general results shows that children of migrant mothers especially those of urban-rural migrants face a higher mortality risk compared to those of non-migrant mothers. The results show that failure to account for migration may alter the estimation of urban-rural differentials in childhood mortality.