Article Type

Research Article

Publication Title

JAMA network open


Importance: Among the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals is to reduce the neonatal mortality rate to 12 per 1000 live births by 2030. Identifying high-risk pregnancies can help achieve this target in low-resource countries, such as India, which accounts for one-fourth of global neonatal deaths. Objective: To analyze the association of maternal history of neonatal death with subsequent neonatal mortality. Design, Setting, and Participants: This cross-sectional study included a nationally representative sample of singleton live births from multiparous women. Data were obtained from the 2016 National Family Health Survey in India. Data were analyzed from November 2018 to January 2020. Exposures: Maternal history of neonatal death and a comprehensive set of covariates, including socioeconomic environment, maternal anthropometry, and pregnancy care. Main Outcomes and Measures: Subsequent neonatal mortality. Population-attributable risk associated with history of neonatal death was calculated, and sensitivity analyses were performed. Results: The overall study population consisted of 127 336 singleton live births from multiparous women aged 15 to 49 (mean [SD] age, 28.8 [5.2] years) years when the survey was undertaken. In our analytic sample, 11 101 (8.7%) mothers had a history of neonatal death, and 506 of 2224 total neonatal deaths (22.8%) were attributed to women with history of neonatal death. The prevalence of history of neonatal death differed by selected covariates and across states or union territories. Maternal history of neonatal death was associated with significantly higher odds of neonatal mortality (adjusted odds ratio, 2.23; 95% CI, 1.96-2.55), and this remained consistent across different subgroups. The population-attributable risk associated with maternal history of neonatal death was 11.8%. Stronger associations were found for maternal history of multiple neonatal deaths (adjusted odds ratio, 3.50; 95% CI, 2.78-4.41) and in respect to the risk of mortality in early neonatal period (ie, 0-2 completed days) (adjusted odds ratio, 2.45; 95% CI, 2.09-2.86). Conclusions and Relevance: These findings suggest that maternal history of neonatal death is a potentially useful risk factor to identify women and neonates who may need extended and enhanced pregnancy care.

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Open Access, Gold, Green