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Do Battered Mothers Have More Fetal and Infant Deaths? Evidence from India

Archived Abstract of Former PSC Researcher

Download PDF versionJohnson, Nan, and Manisha Sengupta. 2008. "Do Battered Mothers Have More Fetal and Infant Deaths? Evidence from India." PSC Research Report No. 08-634. March 2008.

This study uses Poisson regressions to analyze data from the 1998-99 National Family Health Survey of India. The two dependent variables are the incidence rates of involuntary fetal deaths and infant deaths (per total number of children ever born per mother). The independent variable is whether the mother has ever been “beaten or physically mistreated” by a husband or former husband since she was age 15. We find that mothers who report any corporal punishment inflicted by their husbands or former husbands also report a higher incidence rate of unintentional fetal deaths than mothers who do not report conjugal battery. However, conjugal physical assault on mothers is not associated with a higher incidence rate of mortality among their infants. The implications for future research on domestic violence and for public health policy in India are discussed.

Country of focus: India.

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