Health in Mozambique

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Mozambique faces a number of ongoing health challenges.The population of Mozambique is 24.5 million that is 3105 live births average per day and 917 deaths average per day.

Mozambicans have multiple issues surrounding their health. They have very limited sources on food and water so this causes most deaths surrounding malaria, malnutrition and HIV/AIDS. These diseases also make it hard for childcare and during pregnancy as the resources they have in Mozambique are very low.

Mozambique has a high risk of climate hazards such as floods, droughts and cyclones. In 2000 and 2001 a major flood led to major poverty and higher impact to HIV/AIDS.[1]

There has been a massive impact on the health Mozambican people from the war. It has caused an increase of death rates and has caused 320000 infant and child deaths between 1981 and 1986. The health services were under enormous pressure as a huge amount of refugees have arrived from the war affected areas. In the rural areas the health services have suffered due to the widespread disruption. The villages have been destroyed and the health workers have abandoned there posts.[2]

Health infrastructure[edit]

Public expenditure on health was at 2.7% of the GDP in 2004, whereas private expenditure on health was at 1.3% in the same year.[3] Health expenditure per capita was 42 US$ (PPP) in 2004.[3] In the early 21st century there were 3 physicians per 100,000 people in the country.[3]

Water supply and sanitation[edit]

Water is very scarce in Mozambique as the whole family collects it through plastic jugs each day.

About 47% of the Mozambican population has access to an improved water source, and 17% has access to adequate sanitation.[4] Consequences on living conditions are multiple, ranging from poor health to lower productivity due to the time needed to fetch water.

Urban (38% of
the population)
Rural (62% of
the population)
Water Broad definition 77% 29% 47%
House connections N/A N/A N/A
Sanitation Broad definition 38% 5% 18%
Sewerage N/A N/A N/A

Source: Joint Monitoring Program for Water Supply and Sanitation of WHO and UNICEF [4]

Health status[edit]

Life expectancy[edit]

Life expectancy is really important to a country as it shows the number of new borns would live up to as long as the birth and death rates remain the same. The total life expectancy in 2016 for both sexes in Mozambique is 51.8 years. The male life expectancy at birth is 51 years and the females life expectancy at birth is 52.6 years.[5]

Fertility rate[edit]

IN 2009, there were an average of 5.5 births per woman.[3]

Endemic diseases[edit]


In Mozambique, malaria is a major cause of morbidity and mortality especially among children.[6] The disease represents around 45% of all cases in outpatient visits, approximately 56% of inpatient at paediatric clinics and around 26% of all hospital deaths.[6] According to the Demographic Health Survey 2011, the prevalence of malaria among children under five years is 46.3% in rural areas compared to 16.8% in urban areas.[6]

Malaria is endemic throughout Mozambique with seasonal peaks during and after the rainy season, which is between November and December.[6] The seasonal intensity of transmission varies depending on the amount of rain and air temperature.[6]


Further information: HIV/AIDS in Mozambique

The official prevalence of HIV in Mozambique in 2011 was 11.5% for the population in the age range between 15 and 49 years. For the southern parts of Mozambique - Maputo and Gaza provinces, and the city of Maputo itself - the official figures are more than twice as high as the national average. In 2011 the health authorities estimated about 1.7 million Mozambicans were HIV-positive, of whom 600,000 were in need of anti-retroviral treatment.[7]

As per December 2011 240,000 were receiving such treatment, increasing to 416,000 in March 2014 according to the health authorities. According to the 2011 UNAIDS Report, the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Mozambique seems to be leveling off.[7]


Children in Mozambique are still fighting the terrible condition of malnutrition. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), it has affected 43.7% of children during 2005-2011, falling less than 5% from a level of 48% in 2003.there has been progress overt he last 20 years as there are fewer children underweight and less deaths for malnutrition related causes.[8]

The main reasons explaining malnutrition are insufficient dietary intake, multiple and repetitive infectious diseases, poor feeding. Maternal malnutrition is a concern as it effects the foetal and infant growth as well as other birth outcomes. 8.5% of mothers of children under five years old have a body mass index or Body Mass Index less than 18.52 showing chronic energy deficiency.[9]

There has been a study shown of hospital based data collected from January 2001 to December 2010 at rural Mozambican district hospital and have found during this period of time and over the 274813 patients almost half of whom (47%) presented with some indication of malnutrition and 6% (17 188/274 813) with severe malnutrition.[10]

Maternal and child healthcare[edit]

One of the lucky babies that got delivered successfully at the health post.

The 2010 maternal mortality rate per 100,000 births for Mozambique is 550. This is compared with 598.8 in 2008 and 385 in 1990. The under 5 mortality rate, per 1,000 births is 147 and the neonatal mortality as a percentage of under 5s mortality is 29. In Mozambique the number of midwives per 1,000 live births is 3 and the lifetime risk of death for pregnant women 1 in 37.[11]

Health surveys have showed over the years’ maternal health has improved with the use of reproductive health services. It has improved as 84.2% of pregnant women attend at least one ante-natal session, and post-natal visits which is an increase from 37% in 1997 to 51%, in 2003.The main direct causes of maternal death are pre-eclampsia/eclampsia, severe bleeding, infection and obstructed labor. Indirect causes are essentially malaria and HIV. The health facilities providing emergency care is still low on availability.[12]


  1. ^ "Agriculture food and nutrition for Africa - A resource book for teachers of agriculture". Retrieved 2016-05-17. 
  2. ^ Normahomed, A.R (1998). "South African Destabilization and Health in Mozambique". Review of African Political Economy. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Human Development Report 2009 – Mozambique". Retrieved 2010-05-02. 
  4. ^ a b Joint Monitoring Program for Water Supply and Sanitation:Data Table Mozambique, retrieved on 19 August 2012
  5. ^ "Mozambique population 2016 | Current population of Mozambique". Retrieved 2016-05-17. 
  6. ^ a b c d e Mozambique, Disease prevention and control, Malaria. World Health Organisation, Accessed 26.06.14
  7. ^ a b UNAIDS World AIDS Day Report 2011.
  8. ^ "Fighting malnutrition in Mozambique — SOS Children". Retrieved 2016-05-17. 
  9. ^ "Child and adolescent health/nutrition - WHO | Regional Office for Africa". Retrieved 2016-05-17. 
  10. ^ Nhampossa, Tacilta; Sigaúque, Betuel; Machevo, Sónia; Macete, Eusebio; Alonso, Pedro; Bassat, Quique; Menéndez, Clara; Fumadó, Victoria (2013-09-01). "Severe malnutrition among children under the age of 5 years admitted to a rural district hospital in southern Mozambique". Public Health Nutrition. 16 (09): 1565–1574. doi:10.1017/S1368980013001080. ISSN 1475-2727. 
  11. ^ "The State of the World's Midwifery". United Nations Population Fund. Retrieved August 2011.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  12. ^ "Making pregnancy safer in Mozambique - WHO | Regional Office for Africa". Retrieved 2016-05-17.