Schooling and Immunization of Orphaned Children in Eswatini
This paper examines the roles of parental care on education and health outcomes among children in Eswatini. Eswatini is one of the most HIV/AIDS afflicted countries in the world with an increasing number of orphans. This study uses data from the 2014 Eswatini Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS). The logistic and zero-inflated poisson regression models are applied to examine the effects of household wealth, household head’s education level, and an immunization card on schooling outcomes (enrollment status, proper grade-to-age) and a health outcome (the number of vaccinations) of children by parenthood status: non-orphans, single orphans and double orphans. Findings show that household wealth appears a strong predictor for the proper grade attendance of orphans. Household head’s education level is likely to promote school enrollment of single orphans. An immunization card is found effective to ensure full vaccination of children in Eswatini. School fee subsidy programs may be a viable policy option to promote adequate schooling of orphans by lessening budget constraints. The dispensing of an immunization card and collaborated efforts between parents and healthcare providers via the electronic database on a child’s vaccination record are recommended to achieve equity in child health, especially for those with disadvantaged parenthood.
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