Factors responsible for poor household socio-economic status (hSES) vary in different social groups. Little information exists to explain how demographic and household characteristics are related to hSES in rural societies of Tanzania. This cross-sectional study assessed associations between selected women demographic characteristics, household structure and hSES in a rural area in Morogoro District, Tanzania. The study involved 542 women aged 15 to 49 years, who had given birth to at least two children. Data were collected by face to face interviews using a structured questionnaire and Focus Group Discussions. Principal Component Analysis was used to construct hSES index. Women older than 35 years had higher likelihood of being in the higher SES category compared to their younger counterparts [OR1.26 (95%CI1.82-2.94), p<0.05]. Living in road accessible ward was associated with being in the medium to high hSES [OR4.08 (95%CI2.40-6.94), p<0.001]. Households with at least one child aged between 5 and 9 increased the likelihood of being in the low hSES [OR 0.57 (95%CI 1.3-2.06), p< 0.05]. While road accessibility and age determined a better hSES, most other factors were not related to hSES. The findings underscore the urgency for transportation infrastructural improvement as a reliable means for improvement of rural hSES
Key words: Household, socio-economic status, demographic characteristics, women, poverty.
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