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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 1035-1042

Health-seeking behaviour among antenatal and postnatal rural women in Kancheepuram District of Tamil Nadu: A cross-sectional Study

1 Department of Community Medicine, Sree Balaji Medical College and Hospital, Bharath Institute of Higher Education and Research, Chrompet, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, Saveetha Medical College, Thandalam, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. S Gopalakrishnan
Department of Community Medicine, Sree Balaji Medical College and Hospital, Bharath Institute of Higher Education and Research, Chrompet, Chennai - 600 044, Tamil Nadu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jfmpc.jfmpc_323_18

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Introduction: Maternal morbidity and mortality is still a major public health challenge. Lack of proper birth plan and delay in identification of pregnancy complications is one of the major causes of maternal morbidities and deaths, especially in the rural areas. Aim: The study was conducted with the aim to evaluate the health-seeking behaviour for obstetric care services among the antenatal and postnatal mothers in a rural area of Tamil Nadu. Materials and Methods: This descriptive cross-sectional study was done among antenatal and postnatal mothers registered in the Rural Health Training Centre, in Sripuram area of Kancheepuram district, Tamil Nadu during 2017. About 150 antenatal and 150 postnatal mothers were selected by simple random sampling method. A pre-tested structured questionnaire was used to collect relevant data which was analysed using the SPSS version 22. Results: Only 21% of the study participants had adequate knowledge regarding the danger signs of pregnancy and the major determinants were maternal literacy and adequate prenatal care. Regarding the health-seeking behaviour, 62.3% of them preferred primary health centres as preferred place of delivery, 87.3% of them had received adequate prenatal care and it was found to have statistically significant association with adequate gestational weight gain, exclusive breastfeeding, proper weaning practices and consumption of iron and folic acid supplements. Conclusion: The study shows the need to provide health education regarding the danger signs of pregnancy and importance of adequate prenatal care to all pregnant women and expectant mothers, to make them aware of when and how to seek medical care, which in turn could reduce the overall maternal morbidity and mortality.

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