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Disparities in three critical maternal health indicators amongst Muslims: Vis-a-vis the results reflected on National Health Mission
Authors: Md Illias Kanchan Sk, Balhasan Ali, Mohai Menul Biswas & Mrinal Kanti Saha
Source: BMC Public Health, Volume 22, issue 266; DOI:
Topic(s): Inequality
Maternal health
Country: Asia
Published: FEB 2022
Abstract: Background: The post national health mission era has been recognized for India’s accelerating improvement in maternal health care utilization. Concurrent investigations with the purview of examining inequalities in maternal care utilisation have rigorously examined across various socio-economic groups, focusing on Muslim women. The present study examined socio-economic differentials in maternal health care utilisation among Muslims and the delineated factors which are contributing for these inequalities. Methods: Study used the data from National Family Health Survey (NFHS) conducted in 2005-06 and 2015-16. the present study applied concentration index and Wagstaff-type decomposition analysis to measure and decompose the inequality in maternal health services. Results: This study found that utilisation of full antenatal care (full ANC), skilled attendants at birth (SBAs) and postnatal care was increased during 2005-06 to 2015-16. However, the least improvement was observed in full antenatal care whereas substantial improvement was achieved in utilising skilled attendants at birth. Further, the poor and non-poor gap in maternal health care utilisation mostly prevailed among the educated, urban resident, other backward castes among Muslims. The inequality has been declined largely in SBA utilisation compared to full ANC and PNC, especially in the southern India. Higher education, mass media exposure, higher birth order and urban residence contribute and explain most of these inequalities in maternal care among Muslim women Conclusions: Despite the fact that free and cash benefitted health programmes, wealth, mass media exposure and education etc welfare programs benefitted a large number of citizens, it also produced most of the inequalities among Muslims in India. The results focus on the significance of wealth, education, and mass media exposure in bridging the socioeconomic gap in maternal health care utilization among Muslims.