Rural-urban differentials of utilization of ante-natal health-care services in Bangladesh
Islam, Ahmed Zohirul
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Bangladesh has achieved important health gains over the last decade but there is still an enormous gap between rural and urban areas with regard to utilization of reproductive health care services. The study utilizes Bangladesh Demographic and Health Survey (BDHS) 2004 data to identify the more important factors affecting ante-natal health care services in the urban and rural areas. Findings reveal that there exist strong urban-rural differentials of receiving antenatal care. It was found that three quarters of urban women receive antenatal care compared to only half of their rural counterparts. Doctors form the highest proportion of antenatal care providers. The mean number of antenatal visits is higher among urban mothers than that of their rural counterparts. The study also unveils that the majority of urban mothers have their blood pressure and weight measured during pregnancy period while the corresponding figure for rural mothers is found to be low. Logistic regression analysis shows that a mother's education, children ever born, wealth index, telling about pregnancy complications and permission to go to hospital/health center are the significant determinants of receiving ANC. Other significant determinants include the source of drinking water, the region and the husband's education.