Socio-cultural factors influencing the decision of women to seek care during pregnancy and delivery: A qualitative study in South Tongu District, Ghana

Ludovica Barbi, Momodou Cham, Elikem Ame-Bruce, Marzia Lazzerini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Many low-income countries still encounter high mortality rates. The use of maternal health care services is known to be a key intervention in reducing maternal death. Despite investment in the healthcare sector, in 2015 Ghana did not meet the Millennium Development Goal 5 of reducing maternal mortality (MM). The Volta Region registered the highest rate of MM, the lowest percentage of antenatal care (ANC) coverage and the lowest percentage of skilled delivery. This is a qualitative study that used focus group discussions and key-informant interviews to explore the views on pregnancy among rural communities in the Volta Region, identify the barriers in accessing ANC and skilled attendance birth and collect views on how to improve the access to maternal care services. Overall, the study argues that members of the community of the rural villages acknowledge the benefits of ANC and skilled delivery, and the potential risk related to home delivery. However, pregnant women in the Volta Region still encounter different kinds of obstacles that prevent them from seeking maternal health care. These obstacles are driven by social and economic constraints, and by the fact that women may still lack voice in the decision-making process, and by low males’ participation.

Original languageEnglish
JournalGlobal Public Health
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2020

Keywords

  • Antenatal care
  • Ghana
  • Skilled delivery
  • Socio-cultural factors
  • South Tongu

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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