An evaluation of the knowledge and practices of trained traditional birth attendants in Bodinga, Sokoto State, Nigeria

C O Akpala
Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 1994, 97 (1): 46-50
To improve Maternal and Child Health services especially in the rural areas, a programme to train traditional birth attendants (Ungo Zoma) was established by the Sokoto State government of Nigeria in 1975. The impact of the training programme on the knowledge and practices of traditional birth attendants (TBAs) in a rural community in the state was studied. Seventy-four TBAs, consisting of 43 trained and 31 untrained attendants, were interviewed. Statistically significant differences were observed in the proportion of both groups of TBAs able to recognize high risk pregnancies and deliveries for referral to health institutions. In contrast to the trained attendants, none of the untrained TBAs offered any of the following Maternal and Child Health services: antenatal care, advice on immunization of children or their mothers during pregnancy, and family planning. Suggestions for improving the knowledge and practices of the TBAs in Sokoto as well as in other communities wishing to embark on similar programmes are offered.

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