Empowering Women: The Effect of Women's Decision-Making Power on Reproductive Health Services Uptake -- Evidence from Pakistan

22 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

See all articles by Xiaohui Hou

Xiaohui Hou

World Bank

Ning Ma

Johns Hopkins University

Date Written: January 1, 2011

Abstract

A large body of research has attempted to explore the links between women's autonomy and their uptake of reproductive health services in the South Asia region, but the evidence so far is inconclusive. This study uses the Pakistan Social and Living Standards Measurement Survey to examine the influence of household decision making on women's uptake of reproductive health services. The analysis finds that women's decision-making power has a significant positive correlation with reproductive health services uptake and that influential males' decision-making power has the opposite effect, after controlling for socio-economic indicators and supply-side conditions. The findings suggest that empowering women and increasing their ability to make decisions may increase their uptake of reproductive health services. They also suggest that policies directed toward improving women's utilization of maternity services must target men as well as women in Pakistan.

Keywords: Health Monitoring & Evaluation, Population Policies, Adolescent Health, Gender and Health, Health Systems Development & Reform

Suggested Citation

Hou, Xiaohui and Ma, Ning, Empowering Women: The Effect of Women's Decision-Making Power on Reproductive Health Services Uptake -- Evidence from Pakistan (January 1, 2011). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 5543, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1747446

Xiaohui Hou (Contact Author)

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Ning Ma

Johns Hopkins University ( email )

Baltimore, MD 20036-1984
United States

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