Nafisa Halim

Document Type

Working Paper

Publication Date



Despite significant reductions in child mortality rates in recent years, Nepal still faces chronic malnutrition among its children and has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world. According to the 2003 Human Development Report, 540 mothers died per 100,000 live births during 1985 — 2001 in Nepal, which is high even for a developing country. Moreover, 1 in 2 Nepalese children is light for its age and height, and 1 in 10 is short for its age (NDHS, 1996). Given that 80% of the deliveries in Nepal take place at home without any traditional, let alone professional, birth attendants (WHO, 2004), we set out to explore a plausible, yet often empirically unexplored, relationship between mothers utilization of antenatal care and child health in infant and toddler years in Nepal. We ask: why don't all mothers in Nepal utilize antenatal care? Does mothers' utilization of antenatal care matter for child health?'