Timing and causes of neonatal mortality in Tamale Teaching Hospital, Ghana: A retrospective study.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Neonatal deaths now account for more than two-thirds of all deaths in the first year of life and for about half of all deaths in children under-five years. Sub-Saharan Africa accounts up to 41% of the total burden of neonatal deaths worldwide. Our study aims to describe causes of neonatal mortality and to evaluate predictors of timing of neonatal death at Tamale Teaching Hospital (TTH), Ghana. This retrospective study was conducted at TTH located in Northern Ghana. All neonates who died in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) from 2013 to 2017 were included and data was obtained from admission and discharge books and mortality records. Bivariate and multivariate logistic regression were used to assess predictors of timing of neonatal death. Out of the 8,377 neonates that were admitted at the NICU during the 5-year study period, 1,126 died, representing a mortality rate of 13.4%. Of those that died, 74.3% died within 6 days. There was an overall downward trend in neonatal mortality over the course of the 5-year study period (18.2% in 2013; 14.3% in 2017). Preterm birth complications (49.6%) and birth asphyxia (21.7%) were the top causes of mortality. Predictors of early death included being born within TTH, birth weight, and having a diagnosis of preterm birth complication or birth asphyxia. Our retrospective study found that almost 3/4 of neonatal deaths were within the first week and these deaths were more likely to be associated with preterm birth complications or birth asphyxia. Most of the deaths occurred in babies born within health facilities, presenting an opportunity to reduce our mortality by improving on quality of care provided during the perinatal period.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Abdul-Mumin, A; Cotache-Condor, C; Owusu, SA; Mahama, H; Smith, ER

Published Date

  • 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 16 / 1

Start / End Page

  • e0245065 -

PubMed ID

  • 33439915

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC7806127

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1932-6203

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1371/journal.pone.0245065


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States