Assessment of Uptake of Free Maternity Services among Women Visiting Kisumu East District Hospital, Kisumu County, Kenya

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DOI: 10.21522/TIJPH.2013.04.02.Art015

Authors : Chepkemoi Judy, Taratisio Ndwiga


Introduction: Maternity services are an essential part in any and all communities. This includes care from a traditional birth attendants or a trained H W. This is aimed at improving the maternal health and reducing child mortality which in the long run will lead to development.

Problem statement: There has been a problem of overcrowding and poor quality of services already in public hospitals before the introduction of free maternity. This new change saw a rise in the number of women delivering in the hospital increase drastically causing a strain in the already tight situation. Many women hence prefer to deliver delivering in the hands of traditional birth attendants and only coming to the hospital if and when complications occur. This has led to the high mortality and maternal morbidity rates

Justification: Maternity is a crucial part in any and all societies in ensures continuity from generation to generation. It is important to ensure that all women of child bearing age can easily access the services from a skilled birth attendant.

Objectives: Broad: To assess the Uptake of free maternity services among women visiting Kisumu East District Hospital. Kisumu East District Hospital was selected for the research due to its convenience and proximity to the researcher. Descriptive study design was chosen that seeks to describe the pattern of a phenomena by person, place and time. Convenience sampling was used by drawing a representative data. People were selected because of the ease of their volunteering and units because of their availability of easy access.

Data collection: Data was collected by administration of questionnaires where key informants were interviewed. Analysis: SPSS version 20.0 used for data analysis.

Findings: Ninety four percent 94% of the respondents were aware of the free maternity services 93% of the women visited ANC clinic during their last pregnancy while only 7 % did not. A total of 76% of the respondents delivered at home while the rest 24% delivered in hospital. The most common reason for delivering at home among the women was accessibility to a health facility at 41%.

Conclusion: Most mothers were aware of the free maternity services available in Kenya hence attended attend ante-natal and post-natal clinics. Although they are aware of the services available, many of the mothers do not deliver in the hospital due to the low standards of the services caused by overcrowding, low stuffing and insufficient supply of medication.

Recommendation: Undertake a comprehensive maternal health education campaign which focuses on key causes of delay of treatment and seeks to promote gender equality in health decision-making to allocate more funds to the free maternity services implementation to improve its implementation and improve the quality of services provided in the health facilities.

Keywords: Free maternity services, maternal morbidity and mortality rates, Antenatal care and maternal deaths


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