PREVALENCE OF PREGNANCY-RELATED ILLNESSES OF WOMEN ATTENDING ANTENATAL CLINIC AT OWERRI WEST LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF IMO STATE
Health care for pregnant women is an important component of public health services. The study examine the prevalence of pregnancy-related illnesses among women attending antenatal clinic in Owerri West L.G.A. with a view of ascertaining the variables that influence the prevalence. In line with the objectives of the study, nine research questions and three corresponding hypotheses were formulated. Related literature were also reviewed and ex-post facto research design was adopted for the study. The accessible population for the study consisted of all the women who registered for antenatal care from 2001-2007 in the fifteen randomly drawn public health facilities in Owerri West L.G.A. of Imo State. A total of 5617 folders of women who registered for antenatal care for this period of seven years were sampled. Multi-stage sampling procedure of (clustering, simple random sampling, stratification and systematic sampling) were used in selecting the health facilities and the folders of the respondents. A researcher’s constructed proforma was used for data collection. Face validity of the instrument was ensured through constructive criticism of many lecturers. Data collected from 4876 folders of women who were affected by the illnesses under study and were analysed using descriptive statistics of frequency and percentages and inferential statistics of chi-square (c2). Chi-square statistics was employed to determine the difference in the prevalence of pregnancy-related illnesses of women under the following variables: age, parity and location. The three hypotheses were tested at .05 level of significance using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS batch rsystem). The finding among others showed that significant differences existed in the prevalence of pregnancy-related illnesses among women of different age groups, parity status and location. Based on the findings, conclusions were drawn and it was recommended among others that community leaders should mobilize members during meetings and educate them through resource persons on pregnancy-related illnesses and their control strategies.