“Multiple Deprivations and Maternal Care in India,” a study conducted by Sanjay Mohanty and published in the March issue of International Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health, found that in India, impoverished women who lack education face significant barriers in their access to maternal healthcare, including antenatal and post natal care, as well as medical services at the time of their delivery. Low education was more strongly correlated with women’s lack of access to reproductive health care than poverty or lack of adequate nutrition.

According to the study, “Only 25% of women with a combination of low education, poverty and who were underweight received the recommended number of antenatal visits, compared with 71% of women who did not have any of these characteristics; just 17% of these women gave birth with medical assistance, compared with 69% of other women; and 20% received appropriate postnatal care, compared with 61% of other women.”

The authors of the study recommend that local healthcare workers, as well as mass media, be used as tools to inform women with less education about maternal health care services.

Guttmacher Institute4/2/12; Multiple Deprivations and Maternal Care in India 3/12

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