Cadernos de Saúde Pública
On-line version ISSN 1678-4464
ARIAS-VALENCIA, Maria Mercedes. Proximal determinants of fertility: reproductive behavior among Chamibida indigenous women in Antioquia, Colombia. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2005, vol.21, n.4, pp. 1087-1098. ISSN 1678-4464. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0102-311X2005000400011.
The aim of this study was to determine the reproductive timing used by Chamibida indigenous women in Antioquia, Colombia. This socio-demographic study used the reproductive history technique and was conducted in the year 2000. Two hundred and thirty-four homes on the Cristianía indigenous reservation were visited to obtain 253 reproductive histories (83.1% of the women ages 15 to 49). Reproductive behavior was characterized by sexual debut at age 17.8 years (mean), with short intergenesic intervals in 69.0% and an adjusted fertility rate of 5.12 children. This reproductive pattern differs from all other indigenous groups and subgroups in Antioquia. As an explanation, Chamibida women are familiar with and accept Western birth control methods, besides having more access to formal schooling. Current Colombian health system policies are far from appropriate, since they fail to take the indigenous groups' specificities into account.
Keywords : Demography; Fertility; South American Indians; Ethnic Groups.