Date of Conferral





Public Health


Namgyal L. Kyulo


Childhood anemia is a significant public health problem in Nigeria and frequently coexists with malaria. The mortality associated with malaria increases when anemia is present. Insecticide-treated nets (ITNs) are a cheap and effective malaria preventive measure that can provide a protective barrier from insects. There are conflicting results from several studies on the effect of ITNs on anemia in children, with fewer studies on the effect of ITNs on anemia in Nigerian children. This study aimed to measure the effect of ITN use on anemia among children aged 6–59 months in Nigeria. The social ecological model was used as the theoretical framework. In this cross-sectional study, secondary data from the 2010 and 2015 Malaria Indicator Surveys and the 2018 Demographic Health Survey were analyzed using Bayesian multilevel regression. The results did not provide sufficient evidence of the protective effect of ITN use against anemia. Additionally, it was found that malaria, fever within the past 2 weeks, rural residence, and improved water source were risk factors for anemia. Older children, female children, children with older mothers, children with more educated mothers, and those residing in wealthier households had a lowered risk of anemia. Specific to malaria, rural residence, older children, children with older mothers, and recent fever increased malaria risk. ITN use, female children, children with more educated mothers, wealthier households, and access to an improved source of drinking water lowered the risk of contracting malaria. This study contributes to positive social change by providing evidence for the development of public health policies and interventions to reduce childhood anemia in Nigeria.