Author(s): Okafor II, Obi SN, Ugwu EO
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Unaffordable medical bills is a major barrier to utilization of maternal and child healthcare services. This is associated with very high maternal and perinatal mortality and the inability to attain the MDG4 and MDG5 in many developing countries. This study examined the uptakes of obstetric services following introduction of Free Maternal and Child Health Care (FMCHC) in Enugu State University Teaching Hospital, Southeast Nigeria and its impact on the maternal and neonatal healthcare outcome. METHODS: A retrospective comparative study of the utilizations of maternal and child healthcare services from June to August in 2008 with that of September to November in 2008 after commencement of the FMCHC. Information on all the pregnant women and neonates in their first week of Life that attended clinic within the period under review was collected from the Medical Records department of the hospital. RESULTS: FMCHC caused tremendous increases in the uptakes of antenatal booking (202.2\%), and hospital delivery (151.8\%). It also resulted in decreased maternal and perinatal mortality by 16.4\% and 34\% respectively. CONCLUSION: Implementation of FMCHC can make MDG4 and MDG5 attainable in sub-Saharan Africa.
This article was published in Niger J Med
and referenced in Journal of Womens Health Care