Maternal and Child Health Journal

, Volume 15, Issue 8, pp 1381–1388 | Cite as

Factors that Determine the Use of Skilled Care During Delivery in India: Implications for Achievement of MDG-5 Targets



The objective of this study is to identify individual level factors that determine the use of skilled birth attendants in India. Data from the cross-sectional, population-based NFHS 3 Survey 2005–06 was used. A sample of 31,797 women, aged 15–49 years, who gave births in the 3 months preceding the survey and for whom information was available on most variables, were included in the analysis. Both bivariate and multivariate techniques were used to determine factors associated with the use of skilled attendants at birth. In the study we found that wealth is one of the strongest determinants of skilled birth attendant use, with the poor being at a disadvantage. There are significant differences in the use of skilled delivery care among the urban and rural populations in India. Women in urban areas are more likely to use skilled attendants. Muslim women and women with lower levels of education are also less likely to avail skilled delivery services. The use of skilled care depended significantly on the place of delivery. Women who gave history of antenatal visits were more likely to have skilled attendants at birth. Our analysis demonstrates that there are several financial, social, regional and cultural barriers to skilled birth attendant use in India. Effective strategies need to be planned to generate demand for skilled birth attendants and reduce barriers to care seeking, especially among rural poor.


Skilled birth attendants National family health survey 3 Determinants India 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Indian Institute of Public Health-DelhiGurgaonIndia

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