FACTORS INFLUENCING UTILIZATION OF PREVENTION OF MOTHER TO CHILD TRANSMISSION (PMTCT) SERVICES AMONG PREGNANT WOMEN ATTENDING ANTE-NATAL CLINIC IN UNIVERSITY OF CALABAR TEACHING HOSPITAL (UCTH)
This study sought to assess the factors influence the utilization of PMTCT services among pregnant women in antenatal clinic in University of Calabar Teaching Healthcare (UCTH), Calabar. The specific Objectives of the Study were: to assess the level of knowledge about PMTCT services, determine the socio-economic factors influencing utilization of PMTCT services and to identify the cultural/religion factors influencing utilization of PMTCT services among pregnant women in UCTH. Three research questions were raised and a hypothesis formulated to guide the study as follows: There is no significant relationship between level of knowledge and utilization of PMTCT services among women. The study was a descriptive research where 85 pregnant women who attended antenatal clinic in UCTH were selected through the purposive sampling technique. Data were collected by administering questionnaire. Data were analyzed using frequency tables and percentages, the findings of the study revealed that: Majority of the respondents have good knowledge about PMTCT services. The socio-economic factors influencing utilization of PMTCT services among pregnant women were: stigmatization and discrimination by healthcare personnel; dependence of women on their husbands to make healthcare decisions; distance to PMTCT facilities; unavailability of PMTCT services and attitude of health personnel (nurses) towards people living with HIV. Cultural/religious beliefs do not hinder utilization of PMTCT services. The hypothesis was tested for significance at 0.05 level and 1 degree of freedom, using the Chi-Square (X2) analysis. The result showed that the calculated value 55.45 is higher than the critical value (3.84). Thus, the null hypothesis was rejected, indicating that there is significant relationship between level of knowledge and utilization of PMTCT services among women. Based on the findings, conclusion was drawn. It was recommended amongst others that: there is need for involvement of the stakeholders in the healthcare system in bridging the gap between knowledge and utilization of PMTCT services among women.