Factors Affecting Antenatal Care Attendance in Machew Town, Southern Tigray

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Addis Ababa University


Antenatal care is potentially one of the most effective health intervention for preventing maternal morbidity and mortality particularly in places where the general health status of women is poor; but its importance remained under utilized in Ethiopia. A community based cross-sectional study was conducted from February 1-30, 2008 in Maichew Town, Tigray Regional state, to assess factors affecting utilization of antenatal care services among women during their third trimester of pregnancy and within 12 months post delivery preceding the survey. Interviewer administered structured questionnaire was used for data collection. Data were collected from three Kebeles with access to ANC services and a total of 419 study subjects were included in the study. The data were cleaned, edited, and entered into a computer and analyzed using SPSS window version 15. Odds ratios were calculated using logistic regression model to control confounders. Statistical tests were done at a level of significance ofp<0.05. The study revealed that about 80% of the women had at least one antenatal visit during their recent pregnancy. Most of the antenatal care (ANC) attendants made their first visit during their second and third trimester of pregnancy. Among ANC users close to 22% had less than four antenatal care contacts. The main reasons for non-attendance at ANC clinic were related to being healthy and lacle of time. There was a significant association (P<0.05) between antenatal care utilization and socio-demographic variables such as schooling, high parity, income, age and marital s tatus. It was also observed that non-attendance was higher for those with unplanned pregnancy, low knowledge of unhealthy pregnancy andthose whose husband or partner's attitude to ANC attendance were negative. In addition those women who perceived the quality was poor and long waiting time at ANC services and those who had no confidence on the services were significantly associated with ANC non-attendance. The study revealed low antenatal care utilization in the area taking the WHO recommendation that ANC for all pregnant women. Sociodemographic factors were found to be barriers to utilization of antenatal care services. Based on the above findings, improving the quality of service delivery, education and effective behavioral change and communication are recommended to bring about proper antenatal care service utilization by the study community.



Attendance in Machew