Influence of Community Health Strategy on Utilisation of Maternal Health Care: a Case of Laisamis Ward in Marsabit County, Kenya
The main objective of the study was to examine the influence of community health strategy on utilisation of maternal health care, a case of Laisamis ward, which is in Marsabit County, Kenya. High maternal mortality rate is a challenge in every public health in developing countries including Kenya. Community health strategy aims at building the capacity of households not only to demand services from all providers, but to know and progressively realize their rights to equitable, good quality health care. Community level (level 1) are basic community health services. The study sought to address the following objectives: To examine how community's awareness on community health strategy influence utilisation of maternal health care; To establish how community participation influence utilisation of maternal health care; To assess the extent to which established community health committees influence utilisation of maternal health care and to examine to what extent does role of health facility in influencing utilisation of maternal health care. To assess these objectives, the study employed a descriptive survey design, where by questionnaires were generated on related areas of study for the purposes of data collection. Data for the research study were drawn from both primary and secondary sources. Field research was carried out in Merille sub-Location in Laisamis ward by use of In-depth Interview (IDI), Key Informant interviews and Focused Group Discussions (FGD). The target population were mothers of a child bearing age (15 to 49 years) in Laisamis ward. The study used cluster and multi-stage probability sampling techniques in order to select various respondents. Cluster sampling technique allowed the researcher to divide Laisamis Ward into locations. Multi-stage sampling allowed the researcher to select a sample village within each selected sub-location in Laisamis ward. The study used a total sample of 96 respondents. Both Microsoft excel and Statistical Package for Social Science was used to analyze quantitative data while qualitative data was analyzed thematically and the findings presented in tables. Descriptive statistics such as frequency and percentages were used to summarize the data. From the study findings, 81 respondents with 92% were aware of community health workers (CHWs) owing to their roles on health education and promotional activities, while 7 respondents with 8% were not aware of CHWs. Based on the respondent’s findings, 35 respondents with 39.77% were aware of Community health committee (CHC) and 53 respondents with 60.23% were not aware CHC. The study recommended that the government should review the Community health workers guidelines since they are drivers of community health strategy. County health promotion officer should sensitize communities including multiple communications prior to formation and recruitment of new members of community health committee to ensure community are fully aware of them.
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