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Socio-cultural factors affecting pregnancy outcomes among the Ibani of Rivers State, Nigeria

Ezebunwa Nwokocha, University of Ibadan

The Ibani of Rivers State, Nigeria have a high incidence of maternal and infant mortality/morbidity, which is linked to their perception, attitude and practices towards pregnancy and childbirth. This interdisciplinary study examined the processes leading to pregnancy outcomes and provides a comprehensive understanding of the association between these outcomes and child spacing; source of antenatal care; and access and use of antenatal health care facilities. Data were collected through in-depth interviews, focus group discussions, case studies, observation and questionnaire survey. The findings indicate that pregnancy outcomes among the Ibani are not necessarily associated with spousal communication and gender discourse; there is no consistent relationship between time spent in getting to source of prenatal care and pregnancy outcomes. Factors affecting pregnancy outcomes among the Ibani include communal and individual values, norms and practices. The study contributes to a demographic understanding of how macro-level factors impinge upon individual-level events like pregnancy outcomes.

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Presented in Session 168: Maternal and perinatal health: determinants