Women's Reasons for Not Seeking Prenatal Care: Racial and Ethnic Factors

Authors

  • Susan E Meikle MD, MSPH,

    Corresponding author
    1. Susan Meikle is in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Research, Colorado Permanente Medical Group, Denver; Miriam Orleans and Marilyn Leff are in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Biometrics at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center; Denver; Rochelle Shain is in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Texas Health Science Center at Sun Antonio, Texas; and Ronald Gibbs is in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Colorado Health Sciences Centel; Denver.
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  • Miriam Orleans PhD,

    1. Susan Meikle is in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Research, Colorado Permanente Medical Group, Denver; Miriam Orleans and Marilyn Leff are in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Biometrics at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center; Denver; Rochelle Shain is in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Texas Health Science Center at Sun Antonio, Texas; and Ronald Gibbs is in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Colorado Health Sciences Centel; Denver.
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  • Marilyn Leff MSW MSPH,

    1. Susan Meikle is in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Research, Colorado Permanente Medical Group, Denver; Miriam Orleans and Marilyn Leff are in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Biometrics at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center; Denver; Rochelle Shain is in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Texas Health Science Center at Sun Antonio, Texas; and Ronald Gibbs is in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Colorado Health Sciences Centel; Denver.
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  • Rochelle Shain PhD,

    1. Susan Meikle is in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Research, Colorado Permanente Medical Group, Denver; Miriam Orleans and Marilyn Leff are in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Biometrics at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center; Denver; Rochelle Shain is in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Texas Health Science Center at Sun Antonio, Texas; and Ronald Gibbs is in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Colorado Health Sciences Centel; Denver.
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  • Ronald S. Gibbs MD

    1. Susan Meikle is in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Research, Colorado Permanente Medical Group, Denver; Miriam Orleans and Marilyn Leff are in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Biometrics at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center; Denver; Rochelle Shain is in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Texas Health Science Center at Sun Antonio, Texas; and Ronald Gibbs is in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Colorado Health Sciences Centel; Denver.
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Address correspondence to Susan F: Meikle, MD, MSPH, Department of Preventive Medicine and Research, Colorado Permanente Medical Group, 10350 E. Dakota Avenue, Denver; CO 80231.

Abstract

ABSTRACT: Our objective was to determine if there were differences in the reasons for not seeking early prenatal care among low-income black, Hispanic, and white women who had four or fewer prenatal care visits or care only in the third trimestel; and who gave birth at Denver General Hospital in Colorado. Data were gathered from 606 women (48% Hispanic, 26% black, 26% white) after delivery, using a 188-item questionnaire and abstracted medical charts. The most important reasons for not seeking early prenatal care were attitudinal (47%), financial (26%), and structural and system problems (8.5%). Financial reasons were more important to white than to black or Hispanic women, and attitudinal reasons were more important to black and Hispanic than to white women. The analysis showed that education and marital status were sometimes confounding variables. Clear differences in reasons for not seeking prenatal care were reported by women of dissimilar racial and ethnic groups in this public hospital. Cultural variations in womenS views should be taken into account in developing programs intended to improve prenatal care and pregnancy outcome in Denver.

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