HIV/AIDS Mortality and Household Composition in Rural South Africa

Enid Schatz, University of Missouri at Columbia
Sangeetha Madhavan, Tulane University

In this paper, we investigate the effects of HIV/AIDS-related mortality on household composition in rural South Africa. We hypothesize that HIV/AIDS-related mortality impacts household composition differently from other causes of death through its particular age and gender distribution of mortality. We conduct secondary analyses of Agincourt Health and Demographic Surveillance System data, which have been collected annually since 1992 on a population of 70,000 in 11,600 households. Using verbal autopsies to identify cause of death, we conduct logistic regression analyses to identify associations between the occurrence of at least one HIV/AIDS adult death in the household (1992-2003) and household composition in 2003. We compare these to households with an adult death from another cause and households with no death over the period. Our results suggest that although a death affects gender and age composition in households, HIV/AIDS mortality, at this stage of the epidemic, does not have the expected effect.

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Presented in Poster Session 1