Time trend of undernutrition mortality in Colombia, 2005-2019

Forero y Forero


To describe the time trends of mortality attributable to malnutrition in Colombia in the period 2005-2019, overall and disaggregated by age and sex.


Ecological study based on secondary data on mortality due to undernutrition as the underlying cause of death according to vital statistics. Crude, age- and sex-specific, and age-standardized annual mortality rates per 100 000 population were calculated. The direct method was used, and the reference population was proposed by the World Health Organization for 2000-2025. A segmented linear regression or changepoint analysis was performed.


A total of 26 200 records of deaths due to undernutrition were analyzed for the study period, which corresponds to 0.84% of the total number of deaths in Colombia. The mortality rate in the 0-to-4-year age group was 9.9 per 100 000 population; in the 85-and-older age group, it reached 137 deaths per 100 000 population. All significant adjustments had a negative impact on the model trend, indicating a reduction in mortality rates. The annual percent change was significant for the period 2007-2017, when the mortality rate decreased 2.8% in men (95% confidence interval [95%CI]: -4.3, -1.3) and 3.2% in women (95%CI: -5.0, -1.4).


The overall prevalence of mortality attributable to undernutrition in Colombia is low, increasing at the extremes of age, and has been following a downward trend, especially among younger age groups and women.

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