This variable is not available for any of the currently selected samples.
For surviving children under age 5, DIARRECENT (H11) indicates whether the child had diarrhea in the past 2 weeks. Question wording differences affect the comparability of DIARRECENT; see Comparability.
Comparability — Index
Along with universe differences, differences in question wording and response categories limit the comparability of DIARRECENT (H11).
For samples from Phases 1 and 2, the mother was asked whether the child had diarrhea over the past 24 hours or over the past 2 weeks but not the past 24 hours (i.e., during the past 2-14 days). Samples from later phases exclude the probe about diarrhea during the preceding 24 hours.
Because the time interval varies across samples, IPUMS-DHS uses composite coding for this variable. Affirmative responses have a common first digit of "2," while the second digit indicates whether the child had diarrhea in the past 24 hours (code "21"), past 2-14 days (code "22"), or past two weeks (code "23"). Note that responses about diarrhea in the past 24 hours and in the past 2-14 days (codes 21 and 22) must be combined to have the same reference period as samples asking about diarrhea in the past two weeks (code 23).
Variations in question wording and response categories reflect changes in the standard DHS questionnaire. See "Comparability - Standard DHS" below.
Some survey forms include a definition of what constitutes diarrhea in this question (e.g., loose or watery stool; three or more watery stools). Material such as numeric definitions (i.e., three or more watery stools) may affect the frequency of affirmative responses. Researchers concerned about how wording may affect prevalence estimates should consult the Survey Text tab for samples of interest.
Only samples with additional comparability issues are addressed below.
Comparability - Standard DHS
DIARRECENT (H11) is included in the standard DHS questionnaire for Phase 1 forward.
Phases 1 and 2 use two questions to determine whether the child experienced diarrhea in the past 24 hours or in the past 2 weeks (but not the past 24 hours). Question order differed between phases. Phase 1 first asked about diarrhea in the past 24 hours (followed by the 2-week reference period); Phase 2 first asked about the prior two weeks (followed by the 24-hour reference period).
Beginning in Phase 3, the standard DHS surveys exclude the probe for the past 24 hours.
Response categories for the affirmative responses change accordingly, with Phases 1 and 2 distinguishing between children with diarrhea in the past 24 hours and children ill with diarrhea in the past two weeks (but not the past 24 hours), and Phase 3 providing an affirmative response only for children ill with diarrhea in the past two weeks.