Adolescent Marriage, Fertility and Reproductive Health in Bangladesh

M. Mazharul Islam, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh

This paper analyses the marriage, fertility and reproductive health of married adolescent (age 15-19) girls in Bangladesh. The study utilizes data from the 1999-2000 Bangladesh Demographic and Health Survey (BDHS). Discrete-time hazard model is used to estimate the probability of woman having a first birth during adolescence. The data shows a very high incidence of early childbearing in Bangladesh as 35 percent of all adolescents and 72 percent of ever-married adolescents became mother or pregnant within age 15-19. More than sixty percent (61.3 percent) of the young women aged 20-24, who have just completed adolescent period, had a child by age 20. Teenage parenthood is higher among the adolescents from rural, illiterate and poor economic status groups. The annual age-specific fertility rate for adolescents of age 15-19 is 144 births per 1,000 women, which constitutes about 22 percent of the overall TFR. Education, economic status and exposure to television appeared as important determinants of adolescent childbearing.

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Presented in Poster Session 4