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Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública

On-line version ISSN 1680-5348Print version ISSN 1020-4989


CARTER, Marion W.  and  SPEIZER, Ilene. Salvadoran fathers' attendance at prenatal care, delivery, and postpartum care. Rev Panam Salud Publica [online]. 2005, vol.18, n.3, pp.149-156. ISSN 1680-5348.

OBJECTIVE: To provide a baseline perspective on the prevalence of Salvadoran men's attendance at prenatal care, delivery, and postpartum well-baby care and on sociodemographic factors associated with their attendance, with the goal of informing efforts to help men play more positive roles in maternal-child health. METHODS: The data came from the 2003 Salvadoran National Male Health Survey. The data focused on fathers (n = 418) and their most recent live-born child in the preceding five years. Factors associated with the fathers' participation in prenatal care visits, attendance at delivery, and participation in postnatal well-baby visits were explored using logistic and multinomial regression models. RESULTS: Ninety percent of the recent Salvadoran fathers who were surveyed participated in a prenatal care visit, attended the delivery, or participated in a postpartum well-baby care visit; 34% participated in all three of the activities. Attendance at delivery was most common, reported by 81% of fathers; the most common reason that subjects cited for not attending was that they had had to work. CONCLUSIONS: A large majority of the Salvadoran fathers participated in at least one prenatal care visit, delivery, or a postpartum well-baby care visit. While attendance alone does not necessarily indicate that men are supporting their partners, the results suggest that norms are in place for men to play positive roles in maternal-child health matters. Furthermore, the participation of fathers in these maternal and child health care activities may provide new opportunities to educate and further support men in both their own health and their family's health.

Keywords : Fathers; spouses; prenatal care; delivery, obstetric; postnatal care; health knowledge [attitudes, practice]; El Salvador.

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