Illiteracy and superstition prevent Prithvipur women from going to hospitals for birthWomen prefer to give birth at home because they lack awareness on reproductive health.
Bhojkumari Thapa of Prithvipur in Bhajani Municipality-5 has been working as a health volunteer for the last sixteen years. During this period, only one woman in her village has birthed a child in the community hospital—that, too, because of Thapa’s recommendation.
“In all my years working as a health volunteer, no woman has come to the hospital to give birth except for Kurmidevi Chamar, whom I recommended to visit the health facility,” Thapa said.
“Many women in rural areas visit hospitals for regular check-ups and to vaccinate their children, but when it comes to delivering a child, they to do it at home.”
According to Thapa, the women prefer to give birth at home because of superstitions and a lack of awareness on reproductive health.
Meanwhile, Dinesh Kumar Dhobi, a local, said the villagers prefer to go to hospitals in India because of language barriers.
“We can express ourselves easily in Hindi, so we find it easy to visit hospitals across the border,” Dhobi said. “Also, hospitals in the Nepali side are far from our village and we have to cross a river on a boat, which is risky during rainy season.”
However, Dhobi added that the reason women don’t go to hospitals for delivery is more because of their traditional mindsets than the distance.
“Most of the couples don’t adopt family planning measures and they are unaware of the risks involved in home deliveries,” Dhobi said.
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