UTILIZATION AND STRATEGIES FOR ENHANCING MATERNAL AND CHILD CARE SERVICES AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT:
Nkechi Rochas Okorocha Ph. D
Imo State University
Solomon O. A. Obih Ph. D
Department of Curriculum/Instruction,
Alvan Ikoku Federal College of Education, Owerri
Azubuike, Amarachi Salome
Department of Curriculum and Teacher Education, Abia State University Uturu
The purpose of the study was to investigate the extent of the utilization and strategies for enhancing maternal and child care services and impact on sustainable development. In order to accomplish this purpose, four research questions were posed to guide the study. Two null hypotheses were postulated and tested at 0.05 level of significance. A descriptive research design was adopted for the study. The population comprised of 36,269 mothers of childbearing age. A multistage sampling technique with simple random sampling was used to select 380 CBMs. A researcher-designed questionnaire – EUMCHQ- was used for data collection. Five experts validated the instrument, a reliability coefficient of 0.82 was obtained using Spearman’s Brown Correction Formula. Frequency and percentages, means and standard deviations were used for answering research questions while ANOVA was used to test the hypotheses. The findings of the study were as follows: moderate utilization of ANC services, (x=2.7, SD=1.12); moderate utilization of delivery services (48%); postnatal services were highly utilized (73.3%); and very low utilization of family planning methods. Health education of mothers of childbearing age, among others is one of the strategies that can enhance the utilization of MCH. Further results showed that there was a significant difference in the utilization of maternal and child health services based on maternal age and parity. Based on the findings of this study, the researcher recommended among other things that health education and adequate campaign on effective utilization of MCH should be intensified by public health educators and other health practitioners, and health education curriculum should be effectively implemented for the future parents (students) to have greater knowledge of their health for sustainable development.
Keywords: Maternal and Child Health Care, Utilization, Ante-natal services, Delivery Services, Sustainable Development.