Gender Attitudes and Male Involvement in Maternal Health Care in Rwanda
Soumya Alva, ICF Macro
Although the emphasis in global reproductive health programming in developing countries has mainly focused on educating women about issues such as maternal health care and family planning, there is increasing interest in involving men in maternal health care. There is a growing belief that the role of men in the access of care is very relevant given their large role in family decisionmaking. Men’s knowledge about danger signs of pregnancy and what to do about them is very relevant to their lifesaving role during pregnancy and childbirth. Donor assisted maternal health programs therefore have starting encouraging male involvement. Given this context, this paper uses Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) data to examine the extent of male involvement in maternal health care in Rwanda, a country where maternal mortality is still very high. More specifically, the nature and extent of this involvement is measured in relation to gender attitudes of men.