Does Service Accessibility Reduce Socio-Economic Differentials in Maternity Care Seeking? Evidence from Rural Bangladesh
Md. Hafizur Rahman, Johns Hopkins University
W. Henry Mosley, Johns Hopkins University
Maternal mortality is a serious public health concern in Bangladesh. Primary causes of maternal mortality are eclampsia, hemorrhage, abortion, sepsis, obstructed and prolonged labor, most of which can be prevented through proper and timely care seeking and adequate management. However, only a third of pregnant women seek antenatal care, and 12% receive delivery care from medically trained providers. The objectives of this study are to examine the socio-economic differentials of maternity care seeking, and to determine whether availability and accessibility of health services reduce the socio-economic differentials in maternity care seeking. Longitudinal data from the ¡°Maternal Morbidity Prospective Study¡± conducted by Bangladesh Reproductive Health Research Institute (BIRPERHT) are used. Multi-level logistic regression analysis shows that there are significant socio-economic disparities for both antenatal and delivery care seeking. Service accessibility significantly reduces the socio-economic differentials in delivery care seeking but not in antenatal care seeking.