The perceptions and practices of birth preparedness among antenatal mothers in Naguru and kawempe health centres.
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TITTLE: The perceptions and practices of birth preparedness plan among antenatal mothers in Naguru and Kawempe health centres in kampala district. BACKGROUND: Maternal mortality is a global burden, with more than 500,000 women dying each year due to pregnancy and childbirth-related complications. Uganda still has a high maternal mortality ratio of 435/100,000 live births and a low skilled birth attendance rate of 42%. Evidence shows that skilled birth attendance is as one of the key proven interventions in reducing maternal mortality and also that birth-preparedness plan has been proven to increase skilled birth attendance. OBJECTIVE: To assess the perceptions and practices of birth preparedness among antenatal mothers in urban health centres. STUDY DESIGN: A cross sectional study with both quantitative and qualitative methods METHODS: Interviewer administered questionnaire was used by trained research assistants to collect data from 316 systematically selected antenatal mothers who were at >_ 36 weeks of gestations. Data was entered into Epi-info version 3.4.1 and analysed using STATA version 10.0. Five focus group discussions were conducted and data analyzed manually in themes and phrases. RESULTS: Out of the 316 study participants, 48 (15%) had a birth preparedness plan. Obtaining basic safe birth supplies for the mother and the unborn baby and saving money to use the most known elements of the birth preparedness plan at 90% and 76% respectively. It was also note that the mothers did not receive appropriate health education during antenatal care. The respondents had very limited knowledge on the dangers signs of pregnancy with only 42 (13%) of the respondents able to spontaneously mention>_three danger signs of pregnancy. The study participants however had good perceptions on the birth preparedness plan. There was no statistical significane between socio-demographic characteristics and having a birth preparedness plan. Knowledge of danger signs and having a birth preparedness plan was also not significant statistically. CONCLUSION: The practice of antenatal mothers for birth preparedness planning was poor even though these mothers had good perceptions about birth preparedness. Obtaining the basic safe birth supplies was literally taken has having a birth preparedness plan by most antenatal mothers.