Background: Maternal and child mortalities are the main public health problems worldwide and both are the major health concern in developing countries such as Africa and Asia. The fertility behavior of women characterized by maternal age, birth spacing, and order, impacts the health of women and children. The aim of this study was to assess the geographically variation in risk factors of high-risk fertility behavior (HRFB) among reproductive-age women in Ethiopia using the 2016 Demographic and Health Survey.
Methods: A total of 11,022 reproductive-age women were included in this study. The data were cleaned and weighted by STATA 14.1 software. Bernoulli based spatial scan statistics was used to identify the presence of pure high-risk fertility behavior spatial clusters using Kulldorff’s SaTScan version 9.6 software. ArcGIS 10.7 was used to visualize the spatial distribution of high-risk fertility behavior. Geographically weighted regression analysis was employed by multiscale geographical using Multiscale geographical weighted regression version 2.0 software. A p-value of less than 0.05 was used to declare statistically significant predictors (at a local level).
Results: Overall, 76 % with 95 % confidence interval of 75.60 to 77.20 of reproductive age women were faced with high-risk fertility problems in Ethiopia. High-risk fertility behavior was highly clustered in the Somali and Afar regions of Ethiopia. SaTScan identified 385 primary spatial clusters (RR= 1.13, P < 0.001) located at Somali, Afar, and some parts of Oromia Regional Stateregional state of Ethiopia. Women who are living in primary clusters were 13% more likely venerable to high-risk fertility behavior than outside the cluster. In geographically weighted regression, not using contraceptives and home delivery were statistically significant vary risk factors affecting high- risk fertility behavior spatially. No contraceptive use and home delivery were statistically significant predictors ( at the local level) in different regions of Ethiopia.
Conclusion: In Ethiopia, HRFB varies across regions. Statistically, a significant-high hot spot high-risk fertility behavior was identified at Somali and Afar. No contraceptive use and home delivery were statistically significant predictors (at a local level) in different regions of Ethiopia. Therefore, policymakers and health planners better to design an effective intervention program at Somali, and Afar to reduce high-risk fertility behavior and Special attention needs about health education on the advantage of contraceptive utilization and health facility delivery to reduce high-risk fertility behavior.