The impact of the AIDS epidemic on the health of the elderly in Tanzania
By the end of 1999, an estimated 24.5 million Africans were living with HIV/AIDS, accounting for more that seventy percent of all global infections. In Tanzania, an estimated 1.3 million people (of a total population of 33 million) were believed to be infected with HIV, and 140,000 had already died of AIDS. One in every 12 adults is infected. African couples have large families, partly so there will be adult children to support parents in old age. Instead, because of the AIDS epidemic, the elderly are often caring for their infected children, or orphaned grandchildren. The authors use longitudinal household data from Tanzania's Kagera region, to measure the impact of prime-age adult mortality on the level, and changes in physical well-being (as measured by body mass index, or BMI) of the elderly. They find that the elderly in non-poor households have higher BMI. Non-poor households are more likely to have an adult death, and the elderly in these households are more likely to suffer declining BMI in the months before the death of a prime-age adult. The elderly in both poor, and non-poor households experience a significant drop in BMI after an adult death, but BMI recovers over time, and there is no long-run association with BMI levels, and recent adult deaths. The elderly hit hardest are those in households nor receiving private transfers. Private transfers received by other household members raise the BMI of the elderly, especially after a recent adult death. There is no evidence that nongovernmental organizations, or public assistance to the household affects short-run changes in BMI. The elderly who have more living children are physically better off, but short-run increases in the number of teenagers in the household are associated with declines in BMI. Improving the incomes, and assets of the poor is key to improving the overall BMI of the elderly. The elderly who have more assets (such as better quality dwellings) tend to have higher BMI. Controlling for individual, and household characteristics, the elderly in communities with roads that are navigable year-round, have substantially higher BMI. Prevention of communicable diseases is key to reducing short-run fluctuations in BMI - through preventing HIV, and community immunization programs that benefit the elderly.
|Date of creation:||31 Jul 2001|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: (202) 477-1234
Web page: http://www.worldbank.org/
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Rahman, Omar & Foster, Andrew & Menken, Jane, 1992. "Older widow mortality in rural Bangladesh," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 89-96, January.
- Ainsworth, M. & Koda, G. & Lwihula, G. & Mujinja, P. & Over, M. & Semali, I., 1992. "Measuring the Impact of Fatal Adult Illness in Sub-Saharan Africa; An Annotated Household Questionnaire.," Papers 90, World Bank - Living Standards Measurement.
- Lundberg, Mattias & Over, Mead & Mujinja, Phare, 2000.
"Sources of financial assistance for households suffering an adult death in Kagera, Tanzania,"
Policy Research Working Paper Series
2508, The World Bank.
- M Lundberg & M Over & P Mujinja, 2000. "Sources of Financial Assistance for Households Suffering an Adult Death in Kagera, Tanzania," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 68(5), pages 420-443, December.
- Ainsworth, Martha & Semali, Innocent, 2000. "The impact of adult deaths on children's health in Northwestern Tanzania," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2266, The World Bank.
- J. A. Hausman, 1976.
"Specification Tests in Econometrics,"
185, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
- Frankenberg, E. & Thomas, D. & Beegle, K., 1999.
"The Real Costs of Indonesia's Economic Crisis: Preliminary Findings from the Indonesia Family Life Surveys,"
99-04, RAND - Labor and Population Program.
- Elizabeth Frankenberg & Duncan Thomas & Kathleen Beegle, 1999. "The Real Costs of Indonesian Economic Crisis: Preliminary Findings from the Indonesia Family Life Surveys," Working Papers 99-04, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
- Strauss, John, 1986. "Does Better Nutrition Raise Farm Productivity?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(2), pages 297-320, April.
- Axel Börsch-Supan, 1989. "Household Dissolution and the Choice of Alternative Living Arrangements among Elderly Americans," NBER Chapters, in: The Economics of Aging, pages 119-150 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Axel Borsch-Supan & Daniel McFadden & Reinhold Schnabel, 1993.
"Living Arrangements: Health and Wealth Effects,"
NBER Working Papers
4398, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:2649. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Roula I. Yazigi)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.