239668 Health impact of orphanhood on children: A critical review

Tuesday, November 1, 2011: 2:50 PM

Savet Hong, MA, MPH , Department of Demography, University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, CA
From 2001 to 2007, the number of HIV/AIDS-related orphans has nearly doubled to 15 million worldwide. This recent rise in the number of orphans burdens extended family networks, poses serious concern for public programs that provide long-term care, and potentially threatens orphans' developmental growth and overall health status. This paper assesses the health implications of orphanhood on mortality and nutritional status by conducting a critical review of relevant published studies sourced from two electronic databases, NCBI PubMed and ISI Web of Science. Reviewed studies compare orphaned children's health status to that of non-orphans, suggesting an absence of association between orphanhood and mortality. In addition, the majority of the literature implies that orphanhood has no detectable effect on anthropometric status. In the cases where an association is found, orphanhood is negatively associated with health outcomes, particularly for children under 5 years of age. The gap in the literature that can be addressed by future research includes type of orphan, care received, and other health outcomes that may be associated with co-morbidity.

Learning Areas:
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Assesses the health implications of orphanhood on mortality and nutritional status.

Keywords: Children's Health, Nutrition

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I conducted the research for my Master's paper in Epidemiology and it had been approved by my committee.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.