Challenges to Accessing Ante-Natal and Postnatal Care in Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) Camps in Nigeria

Author(s): Aigbe Gregory Ohihoin*, Ebiere Clara Herbertson, Tajudeen Bamidele, Adesola Zaidat Musa, Ebelechukwu Eugenia Afocha, Agatha Nkiru David, Adeniyi Adeneye, Ifeoma Idigbe, Esther Ngozi Ohihoin, David Oladele, Oliver Ezechi and Innocent Ujah

Introduction: These Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) face a lot of challenges which include poor infrastructure and limited access to basic health services including reproductive health services. IDPs are also predisposed to sexual abuse as well as gender-based violence which can result in pregnancies. There is, therefore, the need to document challenges in access to maternal care among this marginalized population to influence policy and overcome the challenges. This study looks at the access to ante-natal and post-natal care in IDP camps in Nigeria.

Methods: Study design is a descriptive cross-sectional study, using mixed methods of qualitative (FGD) and quantitative (semi-structured questionnaire) techniques to interview the respondents.

Results: A total of 587 females took part in the study from which 82 of them were found to be pregnant. 20.7% of the pregnant women sought antenatal care. 34.7% claimed they did not have enough money to seek ante-natal care while the remaining 44.6% had other reasons for not accessing ANC. 91 women (11.7%) of the respondents had infants with an age range 1 month-1 year. Only 35.2% of these nursing mothers had a postpartum check-up after delivery. Of the 91 nursing mothers, 49% gave lack of finances as the reason for not seeking post-partum care.

Conclusion: Access to maternal health care is a major challenge among IDPs. This can impact negatively on the target to achieve the SDGs. Policymakers should, therefore, draft policies that will cater for the maternal health needs of internally displaced Individuals


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