Knowledge, attitude and practice of maternal health care amongst the married women in a rural area of Bangladesh
Bangladesh is facing a big challenge in reducing maternal and neonatal mortality. Addressing maternal health issues is now on the global social agenda in the new millennium. This cross sectional descriptive study was conducted in the unions of Sreepur Upazilla in March 2010 among 300 rural married women having at least one living child. Data were collected by face to face interviews using a semi-structured questionnaire to assess the knowledge, attitude and practice on maternal health care of married women in Sreepur Upazilla. The mean ± SD age of women was 33.5 ± 10.4 years and monthly income was Tk. 6,518.3 ± 5,142.4. Reproductive history of the women reveals that mean ± SD age at marriage, age at first child, and parity were 15.3 ± 2.9, 18.2 ± 3, 3 ± 2 years respectively. Only 42.3% of the respondents knew about swelling of the foot, 36.3% were aware of fits, 25.7% knew about severe headache and 24.7% knew about unusual bleeding as warning signs of pregnancy. About 84.3% respondents knew that the first meal of the baby should be colostrum. Among the participants 57%, 70.7% and 62.3% had average knowledge on ANC, INC and PNC respectively. Rural married women having a positive attitude towards maternal health care was 96.3% in ANC, 80% in home delivery, 61.3% in hospital delivery and 95.3% in PNC. It was found that 35.6% and 27.1% respondents were taking ANC 3 and 4 times respectively. Among the respondents 66.7% had done their laboratory examination and 84.7% took vitamins adequately. About 67.2% respondents performed normal physical work as before during pregnancy and 30.5% took more food than before. Home delivery was practiced by 88.3% respondents and 10.3% women delivered their baby at the hospital. Among the respondents who delivered their baby at home, 64.9% of them practiced few of the features of safe home delivery. Practice was good on ANC among 55.3% respondents where poor practice was found 69.3% on INC and 72.3% on PNC. Age and monthly income were related to knowledge on ANC (P<.001, P<.05) and PNC (P<.01, P<.05) respectively. Practice on maternal health care also related to socio-economic condition of the rural women. Women in rural settings are vulnerable due to poor maternal health care and exposed to risk of pregnancy and child birth. Appropriate health education activities, encouraging institutional delivery and development of socio-economic status are key factors to improve our maternal health.
Ibrahim Med. Coll. J. 2011; 5(1): 13-16
Key Words: Knowledge; attitude; practice; maternal health care; Bangladesh.