Examining Trends in Birth Location and Birth Attendance Among Women in the Amarakaeri Communal Reserve
Despite global improvements in maternal mortality rates, preventable maternal deaths are still an issue for many populations. Indigenous populations, especially those in Latin America, often do not utilize delivery services for a number of reasons, not the least of which are cultural beliefs, geographic challenges, and ability to pay for services. The primary objective of this study is to examine the birth location and birth attendance trends across time of Amazonian Indigenous women compared to women of Andean Highland decent. Additionally, the study aims to compare the education levels, urban status, and income levels of these populations. This analysis uses survey data from families in Amarakaeri Communal Reserve in Amazonian Peru. Bivariate analysis and multivariate logistic regression were used to examine birth location and birth attendance across time. Since 1990, Amazonian Indigenous women in the study sample are increasingly giving birth at health posts in the attendance of nurses, but most still elect to give birth at home with a relative as an attendant. From this, it is concluded that women of Amazonian Indigenous decent are increasingly seeking out skilled birth attendants, but barriers to utilization may remain. Further descriptive research is necessary to ascertain the reasons why Amazonian Indigenous women still prefer giving birth at home, and additional modeling is necessary to determine the effects of potential influencing variables, such as urban status, education levels, and income levels.
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