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Does Distance Matter for Institutional Delivery in Rural India?

Santosh Kumar, Emily Dansereau () and Chris Murray ()
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Emily Dansereau: University of Washington
Chris Murray: University of Washington

No 1405, Working Papers from Sam Houston State University, Department of Economics and International Business

Abstract: In this paper, we examine if access to health facilities improves institutional birth delivery in a resource-constrained country like India. Using a household- and village-level health survey, we find that women living closer to health facilities have a higher probability of in-facility births. A one kilometer increase in the distance to the nearest health facility decreases the probability of institutional delivery by 0.8%. This result does not change significantly even after we account for endogenous placement of health facilities. The results of Two-Stage Residual Inclusion (2SRI) and IV-Probit models suggest that an additional travel of one kilometer decreases probability of in-facility delivery (IFD) by 4.4%. The policy simulation result suggest that, the mean probability of in-facility delivery increases when the density of health facility is increased. Overall, results suggest that geographic distance is an important barrier to service utilization and improving access to health facilities may be an important policy instrument to improve utilization of health services in resource-poor countries.

Date: 2014-03
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-agr and nep-dcm
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Citations: View citations in EconPapers (18)

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