Women’s Position in the Household and Community and the Care of Sick Children in Rural Bangladesh

Nurul Alam, ICDDR,B: Centre for Health and Population Research
Ian M. Timaeus, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

This study examines the associations between women’s position in the household and community (here it is village) and the care of children having acute illnesses in rural Bangladesh using data of the 1996 Health and Socioeconomic Survey conducted in Matlab, Bangladesh. Women’s positions in the household are indicated by their education, domestic autonomy, social capital and household socioeconomic status, and their village-level positions are indicated by percentage of ever-married women who have high autonomy, high social capital and some education. The results show that sick children are more likely to be treated by healthcare providers over home-care if their mothers have some education and high social capital in the village, controlling for illness and child’s characteristics. Better household socioeconomic status is associated with increased use of trained providers (doctors or paramedics) over others. High village-level women’s education and short distance to trained providers are associated with increased use of trained providers.

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Presented in Session 105: Community Effects on Health Behaviors and Outcomes