Affordable Access

Publisher Website

Increasing maternal healthcare use in Rwanda: Implications for child nutrition and survival

Social Science & Medicine
DOI: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2014.02.007
  • Rwanda
  • Maternal Health
  • Health Inequality
  • Healthcare Utilization
  • Economics
  • Education
  • Medicine


Abstract Rwanda has made great progress in improving maternal utilization of health care through coordination of external aid and more efficient health policy. Using data from the 2005 and 2010 Rwandan Demographic and Health Surveys, we examine three related questions regarding the impact of expansion of health care in Rwanda. First, did the increased use of health center deliveries apply to women across varying levels of education, economic status, and area of residency? Second, did the benefits associated with being delivered at a health center diminish as utilization became more widespread? Finally, did inequality in child outcomes decline as a result of increased health care utilization? Propensity score matching was used to address the selectivity that arises when choosing to deliver at a hospital. In addition, the regression models include a linear model to predict child nutritional status and Cox regression to predict child survival. The analysis shows that the largest increases in delivery at a health center occur among less educated, less wealthy, and rural Rwandan women. In addition, delivery at a health center is associated with better nutritional status and survival and the benefit is not diminished following the dramatic increase in use of health centers. Finally, educational, economic and residential inequality in child survival and nutrition did not decline.

There are no comments yet on this publication. Be the first to share your thoughts.