Nepal NMIS Cycle 5: Care During Pregnancy, 1997

Fieldwork was carried out in March and April 1997, in the same sites as the previous cycles of the NMIS process. The survey included 18,653 households in 144 sites, with 19,557 ever-married women aged 15-49 years who reported on 17,609 pregnancies. Data were collected using a household questionnaire, focus group discussions in the communities, key informant interviews and reviews of the health facilities serving the communities.

Three quarters of women giving birth in the previous 5 years had no antenatal care (ANC). Women were more likely to have ANC if they were non-smokers, lived in urban sites, were literate and had more family support. Nine out of ten women delivered at home and only 6% of deliveries were attended by a trained person. In more than a third of cases, the umbilical cord was not cut with a clean instrument. One in five of most recent babies were estimated by the mother to be ‘small or very small’.

The risk of low birth weight was increased if the mother was illiterate, if there were health problems in pregnancy, if the mother smoked, if there was no household support and in rural areas. Overall, 2.3% of babies were reported to have been stillborn or died soon after birth. The risk increased if there were problems in labour, if the woman was not satisfied with the care during labour, if the child had low birth weight, if the mother was illiterate, if there were health problems in pregnancy and if the cord was cut with an instrument that was not clean.