Link Between Education and Access to Maternal Healthcare in India
"Multiple Deprivations and Maternal Care in India," a study conducted by Sanjay Mohanty and published in the March issue of International Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health, found that in India, impoverished women who lack education face significant barriers in their access to maternal healthcare, including antenatal and post natal care, as well as medical services at the time of their delivery. Low education was more strongly correlated with women's lack of access to reproductive health care than poverty or lack of adequate nutrition.
According to the study, "Only 25% of women with a combination of low education, poverty and who were underweight received the recommended number of antenatal visits, compared with 71% of women who did not have any of these characteristics; just 17% of these women gave birth with medical assistance, compared with 69% of other women; and 20% received appropriate postnatal care, compared with 61% of other women."
The authors of the study recommend that local healthcare workers, as well as mass media, be used as tools to inform women with less education about maternal health care services.
Media Resources: Guttmacher Institute4/2/12; Multiple Deprivations and Maternal Care in India 3/12
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .