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REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 202-210

Drivers of early marriage and teenage pregnancy in Kenya and Uganda during COVID-19 lockdown period: A systematic review


1 Department of Health Studies, School of Social Sciences, College of Human Sciences, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa
2 School of Nursing, Great Lakes University of Kisumu, Kisumu, Kenya
3 Centre of Microbiology Research, Kenya Medical Research Institute, Kisumu, Kenya, India
4 School of Nursing, Kibabii University, Bungoma, Kenya
5 School of Nursing, Kaimosi Friends University, Kaimosi, Kenya
6 School of Nursing, Midwifery and Paramedical Sciences, Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology, Kakamega, Kenya
7 School of Nursing, University of Embu, Embu, Kenya
8 School of Economics, University of Nairobi, Nairobi, Kenya

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Brian Barasa Masaba
Department of Health Studies, University of South Africa, College of Human Sciences, School of Social Sciences, Pretoria
South Africa
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jin.jin_63_22

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The present study aimed to explore the drivers of early marriage and teenage pregnancy in Kenya and Uganda during COVID-19 lockdown period. A systematic review design was adopted. The major online databases utilized were PubMed, Google Scholar, Uganda and Kenya Ministry of Health repositories, ScienceDirect, and Scopus. Studies that were originating from Kenya and Uganda that were publicly available in electronic format published from March 2020 to March 2022 were used. The thematic analysis identified major concepts that were drivers to the present research problem which were as follows: (1) school closure and (2) loss of income by parents. The COVID-19 containment measures introduced in the two countries were noted as major contributing factors. During the pandemic, lockdown led to school closures which meant the teenagers being idle at home with an increased opportunity to indulge in sexual risk behaviors. Schools have been noted to be a safe place protecting this vulnerable population. However, with their prolonged closure, the teenagers were exposed to sexual predators. Parents lost income, and this might have contributed to early marriages and teenagers' dependency on their sexual partners. Based on the reviewed evidence, the present study furthers the advocacy for the reduction of early marriages and teenage pregnancy, especially in the current COVID-19 pandemic era. The study calls upon the governments to intensify efforts toward the present research problem as the COVID-19 pandemic is eroding the earlier gains made within the region.


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