Socio-Economic and Demographic Determinants of Antenatal Care-Seeking Behaviour among Women of South Sikkim, India

Background: Pregnancy is the most crucial thing for every mother. Providing appropriate health care services during pregnancy by skilled health care professionals is important for healthy childbirth and better maternal health outcomes. Despite Antenatal care services being free at the Public Hospital in Sikkim, many pregnant women are reluctant to get ANC services because of many socio-economic and demographic factors. Objectives: The present study aimed to identify various socio-economic and demographic determinants affecting ANC services utilization among rural women of South Sikkim, India. Methods: The community-based cross-sectional study was carried out among 250 reproductive-aged (15-49) women residing in South Sikkim, India. The data on various socio-economic and demographic determinants associated with utilization of antenatal care services were collected by adopting a pre-structured schedule interview method by household visits. Results: A total of 73.4% reported that they have utilized the ANC services among women in South Sikkim. Binary logistic regression analysis indicated that several socio-economic and demographic variables of age, age at marriage, age at pregnancy, marital status, family income, education, education of husband, occupation of husband parity and family income were significantly associated with ANC visits (p<0.05), except women’s occupation and religion (p>0.05). Conclusion: There is an urgent need to inform pregnant women and their families about the importance of ANC services to enhance effective utilization and improve the overall health status.