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Determinants of Antenatal Care Utilisation in India: A Count Data Modelling Approach

Arvind Kumar Yadav, Susanta Nag, Pabitra Kumar Jena and Kirtti Paltasingh

Journal of Development Policy and Practice, 2021, vol. 6, issue 2, 210-230

Abstract: The article explores the micro-level factors (social, economic and demographic) that determine the utilisation of antenatal care (ANC) services in India using the Bayesian count data regression model. The primary purpose is to rectify the methodological loopholes in the existing literature using a count data regression model that overcomes the problems of overdispersion in the data. Using data from ‘National Family Health Survey’ (NFHS) data on women of reproductive age (15–49 years), we find that about 33% of pregnant women have not availed ANC during their pregnancy. The factors such as women’s education and partner/husband’s education, children’s birth order, household income, availability of basic amenities, like clean drinking water, media exposure, holding of bank accounts and use of mobile phones are statistically significant and positively affect ANC utilisation. Therefore, the study calls for prioritisation of and special attention to uneducated or less educated rural pregnant women. They should be incentivised adequately to utilise ANC services, which may drastically reduce inadequacy in ANC utilisation and improve mothers’ health before and after delivery. Awareness camps should be organised in every village in rural areas about pregnancy-related complications and the benefits of ANC check-ups. Massive infrastructure in the form of primary health centres or community health centres is the need of the hour in rural India.

Keywords: India; ANC visits; count data; zero-inflated regression model; NFHS (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1177/24551333211030349

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