Men’s involvement in maternal and child health presents an opportunity for the advancement of maternal and child nutrition as men often play a key role in decision-making particularly regarding women’s reproductive health. While most research on men’s involvement in maternal and child health has focused on men’s participation in antenatal care, this study focuses specifically on men’s involvement in maternal and child nutrition. The purpose of the study is to explore how men’s involvement is conceptualised in rural Central Malawi, highlighting the key factors influencing men’s involvement in maternal and child health.
Focus group discussions and in-depth interviews were conducted with 26 informants and 44 community members. Critical policy was used as the theoretical framework to inform the analysis of research findings.
In this study, we identified several factors that facilitate men’s involvement in maternal and child health, but we also identified several barriers. Facilitators of men’s involvement included: recognition by men of the impact of their involvement, pride, advocacy, incentives and disincentives and male champions. Barriers included socio-cultural beliefs, stigmatisation and opportunity costs. The study also found that there were several limitations that had unintended consequences on desired programme outcomes. These included: discriminating against women, marginalisation of married women and reinforcing men’s decision-making roles.
The study findings highlight the importance of involving men in maternal and child health for improved nutrition outcomes. We emphasise the need for nutrition policy-makers to be aware that gender dynamics are changing. It is no longer just women who are involved in nutrition activities, therefore policy-makers need to revise their approach to ensure that they consider men’s role in nutrition.
Bellows AC, Scherbaum V, Lemke S, Jenderedjian A and do Socorro Gonçalves VR. Gender-specific risks and accountability: women, nutrition and the right to food. 2011. http://www.righttofoodandnutrition.org/files/Watch_2011_ENG.pdf. Accessed 12 Nov 2016.
Save the Children. Nutrition in the first 1,000 days: state of the world’s mothers. 2012. http://www.savethechildren.org/atf/cf/%7B9def2ebe-10ae-432c-9bd0-df91d2eba74a%7D/STATE-OF-THE-WORLDS-MOTHERS-REPORT-2012-FINAL.PDF. Accessed 24 Jun 2016.
Yeboah T, Serbeh R, Ommission BP. Of men from gender-development theory and praxis: a pathway for addressing the plights of women? J Soc Sci. 2015;11:7–19.
Ganle JK, Dery I. ‘What men don’t know can hurt women’s health’: a qualitative study of the barriers to and opportunities for men’s involvement in maternal healthcare in Ghana. BMC Reprod Health. 2015;12:93. CrossRef
Yargawa J, Leonard-Bee J. Male involvement and maternal health outcomes: systematic review and meta-analysis. J of Epidemiology and Community Health. 2015;0:1–9.
UN. Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action. New York: United Nations. p. 1995.
FAO, WHO. Rome declaration on nutrition. Rome: Food and Agriculture Organisation; 2014.
Greene EM, Mehta M, Pulerwitz J, Wulf D, Bankole A, Singh S. Involving men in reproductive health: contributions to development. Washington: UN Millennium Project; 2006.
Kululanga LI, Sundby J, Malata M, Chirwa E. Striving to promote male involvement in maternal health care in rural and urban settings in Malawi – a qualitative study. BMC Reprod Health. 2011;8:1–12. CrossRef
Singh D, Lample M, Earnst J. The involvement of men in maternal health care: cross-sectional, pilot case studies from Maligita and Kibbi, Uganda. Reprod Health. 2014;11:1–8. CrossRef
Ditekemena J, Koole O, Engmann C, Matendo R, Tsehfu A, Ryder R, Colebunders R. Determinants of male involvement in maternal and child health services in sub-Saharan Africa: a review. BMC Reprod Health. 2012;9:1–8. CrossRef
Alio AP, Lewis CA, Scarborough K, Harris K, Fiscella K. A community perspective on the role of fathers during pregnancy: a qualitative study. BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth. 2013;13:1–11. CrossRef
Mangeni JN, Mwangi A, Mbuga S, Mukthar V. Male involvement in maternal health care as a determinant of utilisation of skilled birth attendants in Kenya. East Afric Med J. 2012;89:1–12.
Kalembo FW, Zgambo M, Mulaga A, Yukai D, Ahmed NI. Association between male partner involvement and the uptake of prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT) interventions in Mwanza District, Malawi: a retrospective cohort study. PLoS One. 2013:e66517. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0066517.
van den Berg W, Brittain K, Mercer G, Peacock D, Stinson K, Janson H. Improving men’s participation in reventing mother-to-child-transmission of HIV as a maternal, neonatal, and child health priority in South Africa. PLoS Med. 2015; https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001811.
Osman JR, Unkels R, Aliyu U, Musa HA, A and E, ADPA, FWACN, Matthew, OK. Barriers to male involvement in uptake of prevention of mother-to-child-transmission (PMTCT) of HIV in Sub-Saharan Africa. J of Nursing and Health Services. 2015;3:1.
Audet CM, Chire YM, Vas LME, Bechtel R, Carlson Bremer D, Wester W, Amico KR, Gonzalez-Calvo L. Barriers to male involvement in antenatal care in rural Mozambique. Qual Health Res. 2015:1–11.
BKF M, Gregson S, Barriers BM. To men’s involvement in ANC and VCT in Khayelitsha South Africa. AIDS Care. 2012;2:927–77.
NSO, ICF Macro. Malawi demographic and health survey 2010. Zomba, Malawi: national statistics office; Calverton: ICF Macro. p. 2010.
Mseu D, Nyasulu BM, Muheriwa SR. Evaluation of a safe motherhood project in Ntcheu district, Malawi. Int J of Women’s Health. 2014;6:1045–55. CrossRef
van Lonkhuijzen L, Stekelenburg J, van Roosmalen J. Maternity waiting facilities for improving maternal and neonatal outcome in low-resource countries (review) Cochrane database of Syst Rev 2012; https://doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD006759.pub2.
Butrick E, Diamond-Smith N, Beyeler N, Montagu D, Sundinaraset M. Strategies to increase health facility deliveries: three case studies 2014. https://globalhealthsciences.ucsf.edu/sites/globalhealthsciences.ucsf.edu/files/pub/pshi-strategies-to-increase-health-facility-deliveries.pdf. Accessed 28 Jul 2016.
NSO, Macro. Malawi Demographic and Health Survey 2016. Zomba, Malawi: national statistics office; Calverton: ICF Macro; 2016.
Chirwa WC. A review by Afrimap and the open society for southern Africa. Johannesburg: Open Society Initiative; 2014.
Philipose A. HIV/AIDS, gender, and food security in sub-Saharan Africa. 2007. https://cip.cornell.edu/DPubS/Repository/1.0/Disseminate?view=body&id=pdf_1&handle=dns.gfs/1200428152. Accessed 17 Jul 2016.
WFP. Comprehensive food security and vulnerability analysis survey. 2012. http://documents.wfp.org/stellent/groups/public/documents/ena/wfp253659.pdf. Accessed 12 May 2016.
GoM. Malawi’s third integrated household survey. Lilongwe: Government of Malawi; 2012.
Ewing VL, Lalloo DG, Phiri KS, Roca-Feltrer A, Mangham LJ, Sanjoaquin NA. Seasonal and geographical differences in treatment-seeking and household costs of febrile illness among children in Malawi. Malaria J. 2011;10:1–8. CrossRef
Innovation Lab for Food Security Policy. http://foodsecuritypolicy.msu.edu/ Accessed 15 Jul 2017.
Liamputtong P. Focus group methodology: principle and practice. London: Sage Publicationsn Ltd; 2011. CrossRef
August F, Pembe AB, Mpembeni R, Axemo P, Darj E. Community health workers can improve male involvement in maternal and child health: evidence from rural Tanzania. Glob Health Action. 2016;9
GoM. Constitution of the Republic of Malawi. Lilongwe, Malawi: Government of Malawi; 1994.
- A qualitative analysis of men’s involvement in maternal and child health as a policy intervention in rural Central Malawi
Sheryl L. Hendriks
- BioMed Central
Neu im Fachgebiet Gynäkologie und Geburtshilfe
Meistgelesene Bücher aus dem Fachgebiet
Mail Icon II