Title

Citizens' voices in maternal health care in Bangladesh : how loud are women?

Publication Date

1-1-2004

Degree Name

MA in International and Intercultural Management

First Advisor

Maliha Khan

Abstract

This study examined the ability of women of reproductive age to seek health services from NGO (non-governmental organization) clinics, health service providers, government health centers, or private clinics. This research studied the women in two villages in Bangladesh, and the factors that prevented them from asserting their demands to proper maternal health care. This research asked whether or not women were making their demands for better maternal health care known to health care providers. Consequently, did a demand for better maternal health care for women result in actually getting better maternal health care? It was discovered that the husbands and mothers-in-law of the women were deciding that the women needed to seek medical attention, not the women themselves, even when the women experienced significant problems during pregnancy and childbirth. When women attended forums about health care provision, they did not vocally express their concerns, and so, the decisions continued to be made by the men. The research recommends that civil society organizations (CSOs/ NGOs) should play a major role in creating awareness and highlighting the contribution of health care to economic development and poverty reduction. It is hoped that increased awareness of this connection will improve access to maternal health care in Bangladesh.

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