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Title: Factors influencing access and utilisation of antenatal care services by Lemu community in Niger state, Nigera
Authors: Paul, Mary Kakamission 
Issue Date: 2018
Introduction: Antenatal care (ANC) is the health care that is given to pregnant women throughout pregnancy. With ANC services, pregnant women are able to access a wide range of interventions which enhance the possibility of procreative health care.
Aim of the study: The aim of the study was to explore and describe the factors that influence the access to and utilisation of ANC services by pregnant women from the Lemu community in Gbako Local Government, Niger state, Nigeria. The study aimed to answer the following research questions: 1) How are the ANC services accessed by pregnant women from the Lemu community? 2) How are the ANC services utilised by pregnant from the Lemu community? and 3) What are the factors that influence utilisation of ANC services by the pregnant women from the Lemu community?

Methodology: A descriptive qualitative research design was used to collect data using in-depth semi-structured interviews. The study setting was Lemu community area in Gbako Local Government Area of Niger state in Nigeria. Andersen and Newman’s (1973) Framework of Health Services Utilisation was used as a theoretical framework that guided the study. A series of interviews were conducted with 10 health care workers and 12 pregnant women between October and November 2017. Thematic data analysis was utilised and data from the two data sets were triangulated.
Findings: There was limited availability of the ANC services in the Lemu community area which accounted for a number of challenges that were faced by the pregnant women with regards to access to and utilisation of ANC services. Limited availability of ANC service accounted for poor utilisation of ANC services for some women. For other women, poor utilisation of services resulted from cultural and traditional beliefs and dissatisfaction with existing services. The factors that were identified as influencing access and utilisation of ANC services included: travelling to the clinic, satisfaction with existing service, financial issues, community awareness and traditional and cultural beliefs.
Conclusion: The Lemu community area, similar to other rural communities, still has challenges regarding access to and utilisation of ANC services. Although making services available could be the key to solving this problem, attention also needs to be

paid to traditional and cultural beliefs of the community in this area because of the influence of these on utilisation of ANC services.
Recommendations: The following recommendations were made: The policy makers and other responsible authorities should periodically review the existing policies related to ANC service delivery and the training of midwives to ensure that these are aligned to the needs of the community. Policies for service delivery should take cognisence of limited resources. There is a need to strengthen access to ANC services by finding ways of increasing the number of local ANC services and bringing the services closer to the people. Strategies to increase satisfaction of the clients with ANC services should be instituted.
Submitted in fulfillment of the requirements for the Master’s Degree in Health Sciences in Nursing, Durban University of Technology, Durban, South Africa, 2018.
Appears in Collections:Theses and dissertations (Health Sciences)

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