Prevalence, Trends, and Determinants of at Least Four Antenatal Visits in Malawi: Analyses of the Malawi Demographic and Health Surveys 1992–2016

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Martin Enock Palamuleni


This study aims to determine the prevalence, trends, and determinants of at least four antenatal visits in Malawi. The study used Demographic and Health Surveys from 1992 to 2016. The study population consisted of women who gave birth to at least one child within 60 months before the survey. Chi-square test and logistic regression analyses were used to establish the relationships between dependent and independent variables. The percentage of pregnant women who had at least four antenatal visits was 63.8% in 1992, 56.7% in 2000, 57.7% in 2004, 44.5% in 2010, and 50.6% in 2016. In 2016, the pregnant women less likely to have four or more antenatal visits were aged 15–19 years (OR = 0.51, 95% CI = 0.38–0.69), not using family planning (OR = 0.89, 95% CI = 0.80–0.98), not working (OR = 0.81, 95% CI = 0.76–0.88) and had no education (OR = 0.75, 95% CI = 0.65–0.87). Women residing in urban areas (OR = 1.28, 95% CI = 1.14–1.44), having 1–2 children ever born (OR = 1.30, 95% CI = 1.12–1.50), were more likely to have four or more antenatal visits. In 2010, women residing in the Northern Region (OR = 1.26, 95% CI = 1.05–1.52) were more likely to have four or more antenatal visits, whereas poor women (OR = 0.78, 95% CI = 0.69–0.88) were less likely. The study recommends that poor, uneducated, rural women with high parity should be encouraged to utilize antenatal care services through social and behavior change communication campaigns.


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Martin Enock Palamuleni, Population Studies and Demography & Population and Health Research Entity, North-West University, South Africa

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