Population Association of America (PAA) 2013 Annual Meeting
"Barrier of distance and transportation cost to access maternity services in rural Bangladesh"
Kaji Tamanna Keya and Benjamin Bellows
In Bangladesh, women dying for maternal causes remain high. Women face long distance and significant transportation costs to deliver at hospital. To reduce barriers, the government introduced demand-side financing program that gives transportation allowance for antenatal, delivery, complication management and postnatal care. The paper aims to identify the role of distance and transportation cost from 3,300 mothers who had given birth in the year preceding the survey in 2010. Facility-based maternal service utilization was found to be alarmingly poor. On average, women travelled six kilometers for antenatal and postnatal check-ups but eight kilometers for complication management or delivery. On average they spent US$1.4 for antenatal, US$6.17 for delivery and US$1.89 for postnatal check-up. Women mainly used human-powered rickshaw or van. For each additional kilometer, the transportation cost increased by US$0.13 for antenatal, US$0.44 for delivery and US$0.11 for postnatal care. Currently the program gives US$1.4 per visit. Based on findings, the program should reconsider the allowance.
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