Family Planning and Women's and Children's Health: Long Term Consequences of an Outreach Program in Matlab, Bangladesh

38 Pages Posted: 19 May 2012

See all articles by Shareen Joshi

Shareen Joshi

Georgetown University

T. Paul Schultz

Yale University - Economic Growth Center; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

The paper analyzes the impact of an experimental maternal and child health and family-planning program that was implemented in Matlab, Bangladesh in 1977. Village data from 1974, 1982 and 1996 suggest that program villages experienced extra declines in fertility of about 17%. Household data from 1996 confirm that this decline in "surviving fertility" persisted for nearly two decades. Women in program villages also experienced other benefits: lower child mortality, improved health status, and greater use of preventive health inputs. Some benefits also diffused beyond the boundaries of the program villages into neighboring comparison villages. These program effects are robust to the inclusion of individual, household, and community characteristics. This paper concludes that the benefits of this reproductive and child health program in rural Bangladesh have many dimensions extending well beyond fertility reduction, which do not appear to dissipate after two decades.

Keywords: program evaluation, health and women's work, health and development, family planning, fertility, Bangladesh

JEL Classification: O12, J13, I12, J16

Suggested Citation

Joshi, Shareen and Schultz, T. Paul, Family Planning and Women's and Children's Health: Long Term Consequences of an Outreach Program in Matlab, Bangladesh. IZA Discussion Paper No. 6551, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2062750

Shareen Joshi (Contact Author)

Georgetown University ( email )

Washington, DC 20057
United States

T. Paul Schultz

Yale University - Economic Growth Center ( email )

Box 208269
New Haven, CT 06520-8269
United States
203-432-3620 (Phone)
203-432-5591 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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