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      The distance-quality trade-off in women’s choice of family planning provider in North Eastern Tanzania


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          Studies on the determinants of contraceptive use often consider distance to the nearest health facility offering contraception as a key explanatory variable. Women, however, may not seek contraception from the nearest facility, rather opting for a more distant facility with better quality services or to ensure greater privacy and anonymity.


          The dataset used include the name of facility where each women obtained contraception, measures of facility quality, and the distance between each woman’s home and 39 potential facilities she might visit. We use a conditional-multinomial logit model to estimate the determinants of her facility choice to visit and how women tradeoff travelling longer distances to use higher quality facilities.


          Only 33% of woman who received contraception from a health facility used their nearest facility. While the nearest facility was 1.2 km away, the average distance to facility used was 2.9 km, indicating women are willing to travel significantly longer distances for higher quality. Women prefer facilities that specialise in providing contraception, provide a large range of methods, do not suffer from stock outs and do not charge fees. Furthermore, on average, women are willing to travel an additional 2 km for a facility that offers more family planning methods, 4.7 km for a facility without one additional health service, 9 km for a facility without fees for contraception and 11 km for a facility not experiencing stock out of an additional contraception.


          Our results suggest that quality of services provided is an important driver of facility choice in addition to distance to facility.

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          Factors influencing place of delivery for women in Kenya: an analysis of the Kenya demographic and health survey, 2008/2009

          Background Maternal mortality in Kenya increased from 380/100000 live births to 530/100000 live births between 1990 and 2008. Skilled assistance during childbirth is central to reducing maternal mortality yet the proportion of deliveries taking place in health facilities where such assistance can reliably be provided has remained below 50% since the early 1990s. We use the 2008/2009 Kenya Demographic and Health Survey data to describe the factors that determine where women deliver in Kenya and to explore reasons given for home delivery. Methods Data on place of delivery, reasons for home delivery, and a range of potential explanatory factors were collected by interviewer-led questionnaire on 3977 women and augmented with distance from the nearest health facility estimated using health facility Global Positioning System (GPS) co-ordinates. Predictors of whether the woman’s most recent delivery was in a health facility were explored in an exploratory risk factor analysis using multiple logistic regression. The main reasons given by the woman for home delivery were also examined. Results Living in urban areas, being wealthy, more educated, using antenatal care services optimally and lower parity strongly predicted where women delivered, and so did region, ethnicity, and type of facilities used. Wealth and rural/urban residence were independently related. The effect of distance from a health facility was not significant after controlling for other variables. Women most commonly cited distance and/or lack of transport as reasons for not delivering in a health facility but over 60% gave other reasons including 20.5% who considered health facility delivery unnecessary, 18% who cited abrupt delivery as the main reason and 11% who cited high cost. Conclusion Physical access to health facilities through distance and/or lack of transport, and economic considerations are important barriers for women to delivering in a health facility in Kenya. Some women do not perceive a need to deliver in a health facility and may value health facility delivery less with subsequent deliveries. Access to appropriate transport for mothers in labour and improving the experiences and outcomes for mothers using health facilities at childbirth augmented by health education may increase uptake of health facility delivery in Kenya.
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            Distance to Care, Facility Delivery and Early Neonatal Mortality in Malawi and Zambia

            Background Globally, approximately 3 million babies die annually within their first month. Access to adequate care at birth is needed to reduce newborn as well as maternal deaths. We explore the influence of distance to delivery care and of level of care on early neonatal mortality in rural Zambia and Malawi, the influence of distance (and level of care) on facility delivery, and the influence of facility delivery on early neonatal mortality. Methods and Findings National Health Facility Censuses were used to classify the level of obstetric care for 1131 Zambian and 446 Malawian delivery facilities. Straight-line distances to facilities were calculated for 3771 newborns in the 2007 Zambia DHS and 8842 newborns in the 2004 Malawi DHS. There was no association between distance to care and early neonatal mortality in Malawi (OR 0.97, 95%CI 0.58–1.60), while in Zambia, further distance (per 10 km) was associated with lower mortality (OR 0.55, 95%CI 0.35–0.87). The level of care provided in the closest facility showed no association with early neonatal mortality in either Malawi (OR 1.02, 95%CI 0.90–1.16) or Zambia (OR 1.02, 95%CI 0.82–1.26). In both countries, distance to care was strongly associated with facility use for delivery (Malawi: OR 0.35 per 10km, 95%CI 0.26–0.46). All results are adjusted for available confounders. Early neonatal mortality did not differ by frequency of facility delivery in the community. Conclusions While better geographic access and higher level of care were associated with more frequent facility delivery, there was no association with lower early neonatal mortality. This could be due to low quality of care for newborns at health facilities, but differential underreporting of early neonatal deaths in the DHS is an alternative explanation. Improved data sources are needed to monitor progress in the provision of obstetric and newborn care and its impact on mortality.
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              Moving Toward Patient-Centered Care in Africa: A Discrete Choice Experiment of Preferences for Delivery Care among 3,003 Tanzanian Women

              Objective In order to develop patient-centered care we need to know what patients want and how changing socio-demographic factors shape their preferences. Methods We fielded a structured questionnaire that included a discrete choice experiment to investigate women’s preferences for place of delivery care in four rural districts of Pwani Region, Tanzania. The discrete choice experiment consisted of six attributes: kind treatment by the health worker, health worker medical knowledge, modern equipment and medicines, facility privacy, facility cleanliness, and cost of visit. Each woman received eight choice questions. The influence of potential supply- and demand- side factors on patient preferences was evaluated using mixed logit models. Results 3,003 women participated in the discrete choice experiment (93% response rate) completing 23,947 choice tasks. The greatest predictor of health facility preference was kind treatment by doctor (β = 1.13, p<0.001), followed by having a doctor with excellent medical knowledge (β = 0.89 p<0.001) and modern medical equipment and drugs (β = 0.66 p<0.001). Preferences for all attributes except kindness and cost were changed with changes to education, primiparity, media exposure and distance to nearest hospital. Conclusions Care quality, both technical and interpersonal, was more important than clinic inputs such as equipment and cleanliness. These results suggest that while basic clinic infrastructure is necessary, it is not sufficient for provision of high quality, patient-centered care. There is an urgent need to build an adequate, competent, and kind health workforce to raise facility delivery and promote patient-centered care.

                Author and article information

                BMJ Glob Health
                BMJ Glob Health
                BMJ Global Health
                BMJ Publishing Group (BMA House, Tavistock Square, London, WC1H 9JR )
                13 February 2020
                : 5
                : 2
                : e002149
                [1 ] departmentDepartment of Global Health and Population , Harvard University T H Chan School of Public Health , Boston, Massachusetts, USA
                [2 ] departmentInstitute of Public Health , Kilimanjaro Christian Medical University College , Moshi, Kilimanjaro, United Republic of Tanzania
                Author notes
                [Correspondence to ] Dr Bilikisu Elewonibi; elewonibi@ 123456hsph.harvard.edu
                © Author(s) (or their employer(s)) 2020. Re-use permitted under CC BY-NC. No commercial re-use. See rights and permissions. Published by BMJ.

                This is an open access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited, appropriate credit is given, any changes made indicated, and the use is non-commercial. See:  http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/.

                : 07 November 2019
                : 13 January 2020
                : 17 January 2020
                Original Research
                Custom metadata

                geographic information systems,health systems,cross-sectional survey


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