Reproductive health human rights : women's knowledge, attitude, and practices toward their reproductive health rights in Palestine

Dhaher E (2008)
Bielefeld (Germany): Bielefeld University.

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Bielefeld Dissertation | English
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Krämer, Alexander (Prof. Dr. med.)
Abstract
Reproductive health rights ensure that people are able to have satisfying and safe sex life and that they have the capacity to reproduce with freedom to decide, when and how often to do so. Reproductive health rights also include the access of women to high quality health care services that help in protecting women during pregnancy and childbearing and providing the couples with the best chances of having healthy. In addition, reproductive health rights might be an important indicator for women's health. Studies that were conducted in Palestine before had not focused on assessing women's perception on their reproductive health rights while receiving the health care. Therefore, the main purpose of this study was to assess knowledge, perception, attitude, and practices of reproductive health rights among the Palestinian women of reproductive age (15-49). Specifically, the objective was to assess women's perception of their reproductive health rights while receiving their reproductive health care (in particular: reproductive health rights concepts and meaning, family planning, antenatal care, delivery care and postnatal care). In addition, the present study aimed to assess women's perception towards wife beating and the best marriage age for women. In order to achieve this purpose, a cross sectional study was conducted in 2006 at three clinics that provide Mother and Child Health Care in the West Bank. The clinics were located in the three largest cities in the West Bank: Jenin in the north, Ramallah in the center, and Hebron in the south. A total of 450 women (150 women in each site) in reproductive age (15-49) were interviewed using a structured questionnaire. The questionnaire assessed several issues related to reproductive health such as: understanding of reproductive rights, knowledge and use of family planning methods, antenatal care, delivery care, postnatal care, attitudes towards domestic violence and age at first marriage. Response rate of the study was 99.4 percent. Generally, the results of this study revealed that women had positive understanding of their reproductive health rights. Women mentioned the right to have good access to health care during and after the course of pregnancy as their first important right. The majority of women were able to identify the modern contraceptives and most women mentioned that they made the fertility decision together with their husbands. Women started antenatal care at a relatively early stage of their pregnancy (before 4-month pregnancy), and 78.2 percent of women made six or more antenatal care visits during their entire pregnancy. Almost all women delivered their last child in medical institutions and under medical supervision. Women were most likely more satisfied from the private health facilities than from the governmental facilities. Although the majority of women considered postnatal care necessary (66.1 percent), only 36.6 percent of women obtained postnatal care. Sixty-five percent of women agreed with at least one reason for wife beating. The mean age of first marriage among the 450 women was 20 years old and the median was 19, while half of the women perceived the best age of their daughter's marriage between 17 and 20 years old. Based on the results of this study, it is recommended to consider these results when planning for any women's health programs and projects. In order to improve health care services based on women's needs and priorities, we also recommend setting new policies and regulations that protect women against violence and organizing public education programs to change women's perception towards intimate partner violence and age at first marriage. Empowering women through education and open employment opportunity might help women in making decisions regarding their fertility and taking an active role when they experience any reproductive health rights violation. Future research should expand to include Gaza Strip and to include men, adolescent, health care providers, health policy makers and key law and religious leaders.
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Dhaher E. Reproductive health human rights : women's knowledge, attitude, and practices toward their reproductive health rights in Palestine. Bielefeld (Germany): Bielefeld University; 2008.
Dhaher, E. (2008). Reproductive health human rights : women's knowledge, attitude, and practices toward their reproductive health rights in Palestine. Bielefeld (Germany): Bielefeld University.
Dhaher, E. (2008). Reproductive health human rights : women's knowledge, attitude, and practices toward their reproductive health rights in Palestine. Bielefeld (Germany): Bielefeld University.
Dhaher, E., 2008. Reproductive health human rights : women's knowledge, attitude, and practices toward their reproductive health rights in Palestine, Bielefeld (Germany): Bielefeld University.
E. Dhaher, Reproductive health human rights : women's knowledge, attitude, and practices toward their reproductive health rights in Palestine, Bielefeld (Germany): Bielefeld University, 2008.
Dhaher, E.: Reproductive health human rights : women's knowledge, attitude, and practices toward their reproductive health rights in Palestine. Bielefeld University, Bielefeld (Germany) (2008).
Dhaher, Enas. Reproductive health human rights : women's knowledge, attitude, and practices toward their reproductive health rights in Palestine. Bielefeld (Germany): Bielefeld University, 2008.
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