Determining the Frequency and Influential Factors Impacting Antenatal Care Service Utilization Among Pregnant Women in Attendance at Mutara Health Centre III, Mitooma District, Uganda

 Byaruhanga Aloysious Gonz

Faculty of Clinical Medicine and Dentistry Kampala International University Western Campus Uganda.


Antenatal care (ANC) plays a pivotal role in curbing maternal mortality rates. This investigation sought to gauge the prevalence of and factors influencing antenatal care service utilization among pregnant women visiting Mutara Health Centre III’s antenatal care clinic. The study involved 200 pregnant women in a cross-sectional analysis, employing an interview questionnaire to assess ANC service utilization determinants. Statistical Package for Social Sciences software was utilized for data analysis. The prevalence was determined by comparing the actual ANC attendance (from mid-July 2022 to mid-August 2022) against the projected monthly ANC attendance (300). The resulting attendance rate of 66.67% was categorized as inadequate, falling below the globally recommended coverage of 80%. Demographic findings revealed that the majority (57.5%) were peasants, while 47.5% of their partners had primary education. Alarmingly, 62.5% lacked knowledge regarding the appropriate timing for seeking ANC. Key conclusions drawn were that the attendance rate for ANC was notably low, coupled with inadequate knowledge among pregnant women about ANC and a prevalence of low socioeconomic status. Recommendations included tailored education programs for expectant mothers on ANC services by healthcare personnel at Mutara Health Centre III, public awareness campaigns by the Mitooma district health officer emphasizing the benefits of ANC attendance, governmental strategies to improve the livelihoods of those served by the health center, and a proposed study to assess maternal mortality prevalence specifically at Mutara Health Centre III.

Keywords: Antenatal care, Pregnant women, maternal mortality, Healthcare workers.


Antenatal care is a planned program of medical management of pregnant women directed towards making pregnancy and labour a safe and satisfying experience [1, 2]. The aims of antenatal care include; monitoring the progress of pregnancy to ensure maternal health and normal fetal development, recognizing deviation from normal and providing management or treatment as required ensuring privacy at all times, to ensuring that the woman reaches the end of the pregnancy physically and emotionally prepared for her delivery, preparing the mother for breastfeeding and giving advice about appropriate preparation for lactation and nutrition to the mother. Others include offering advice on parenthood either in a planned program or on an individual basis taking into consideration the client’s concerns and building up a trusting relationship between the family (mother and her partner) and healthcare worker which will encourage them/her to share their anxieties and fears about pregnancy [3-5]. Globally the coverage of antenatal care is at 87.1% [6] and the coverage of deliveries by a skilled birth attendant range from 59% in the WHO African region to over 90% in America, Europe and the Western Pacific [7]. Whereas utilization of attending at least four antenatal care visits in the East African region was 52.44% (95% CI: 52.13, 52.74), with the highest attending at least four or more antenatal care visit visits in Zimbabwe 75.72% and the lowest attending at least four or more antenatal care visit visits in Ethiopia 31.82% [8]. In Uganda according to the Uganda Demographic Health Survey in 2016 the antenatal coverage was at 60% for at least four antenatal care visits throughout the pregnancy period [9]. Reduction in the death of mothers due to pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions is the core aim of antenatal care globally [10, 11]. More so, antenatal care also reduces the incidence of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (MTCT). MTCT is one of the easiest ways of HIV transmission [12-15]. During ANC, pregnant women are given some drugs that help to nourish them and the unborn babies. This minimizes the risk of some diseases like anemia and other congenital abnormalities [16-18]. The global rate of maternal mortality is still unacceptably high with estimates for 2017 showing that some 810 women die every day from pregnancy or childbirth-related complications around the world “high despite the antenatal care coverage” and the maternal mortality ratio in the least developed countries is as high as 415 per 100 000 births, versus 12 per 100 000 in Europe and Northern America and 7 in Australia and New Zealand [7]. Uganda’s maternal mortality ratio, though on a reducing trend remains unacceptably high at 336 per 100,000 live births [19]. Different countries in conjunction with the World Health Organization including Uganda, have tried to sensitize the public about the benefits of utilizing antenatal care service and it has also been availed to the public at no cost [19]. However, with all these efforts, the maternal mortality rate has remained high in different countries including Uganda. However, no study has been conducted at Mutara Health Centre III about the turnover rate for antenatal care services as well as factors affecting the utilization of antenatal care services among pregnant women. Thus, this study was designed to determine the prevalence and factors affecting the utilization of antenatal care service among pregnant women attending the antenatal care clinic at Mutara Health Centre III.


The prevalence of antenatal care attendance was low among pregnant mothers attending antenatal care clinic at Mutara health centre III. Low socioeconomic status was the socioeconomic factors affecting utilization of antenatal care service among pregnant mothers attending antenatal care clinic at Mutara health centre III. Insufficient knowledge about antenatal care was the major maternal related factor affecting utilization of antenatal care service among pregnant mothers attending antenatal care clinic at Mutara health centre III. There was no negative significant finding in the health facility related factors affecting utilization of antenatal care service among pregnant mothers attending antenatal care clinic at Mutara health centre III.


The healthcare workers at Mutara health centre III should design news methods of educating pregnant mothers about the benefits of antenatal care. The office of the district health officer of Mitooma district should sensitize the public about the benefits of antenatal care. The government should educate the people living around Mutara Health Centre III on how they can improve their livelihood to have a high socioeconomic status. A study should be conducted to determine the prevalence of maternal mortality at Mutara Health Centre III.


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CITE AS: Byaruhanga Aloysious Gonz (2023). Determining the Frequency and Influential Factors Impacting Antenatal Care Service Utilization Among Pregnant Women in Attendance at Mutara Health Centre III, Mitooma District, Uganda. IDOSR JOURNAL OF BIOCHEMISTRY, BIOTECHNOLOGY AND ALLIED FIELDS 8(3): 48-58.