Inequalities in women’s utilization of postnatal care services in Bangladesh from 2004 to 2017

Samia Aziz, Abdul Basit, Saima Sultana, Caroline S.E. Homer, Joshua P. Vogel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Postnatal care (PNC) is an essential component of maternity care. Appropriate and timely care immediately after childbirth can save lives and help to prevent or treat comorbidities resulting from pregnancy and childbirth. Despite its importance, PNC coverage is still low in Bangladesh. The aim of this study was to analyse the trends, inequalities, and factors associated with PNC for mothers in Bangladesh. Data from the last five Bangladesh Demographic and Health Surveys (BDHS) were used. Descriptive statistics were used to report PNC outcome rates and trends across six inequality indicators. Modified Poisson regression analyses were used to identify factors associated with PNC use in the most recent BDHS. A total of 21,240 women were included for the analysis. The rate of PNC by ‘medically trained provider’ within 2 days of birth increased between 2004 and 2017, from 16 to 52%. There were wide inequalities across socio-demographic factors. The regression analyses found women giving birth at home, women from the poorest wealth quintile and women receiving no antenatal care (ANC) were least likely to receive PNC. The findings emphasize the need to improve public health programs supporting women who have the least access to PNC. The identified inequalities can inform policy formulation to ensure more equitable provision of PNC to women in Bangladesh.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2747
Number of pages11
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022
Externally publishedYes

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