When men attend antenatal clinics with their pregnant partners, women’s use of health services is greater (Afghanistan)


An analysis of 2015 survey data in Afghanistan, covering 2,660 couples, found four correlations. Women whose partners attend the antenatal clinic (though not necessarily the actual check-ups) are:

  • 42% more likely to attend an ANC four or more times
  • 21% more likely to start ANC visits during the first semester
  • 23% more likely to give birth in a health facility
  • 24% more likely to attend postnatal checkups

The researchers recommend community wide awareness education programmes to enhance attendance of men at antenatal clinics. In Afghanistan, the movement of women without male relatives is restricted.

Overall, 69% of men attended the clinic with their pregnant partner. 31% of women attended an ANC four or more times, 49% started ANC visits during the first semester, 71% gave birth in a health facility, and 31% attended postnatal checkups.

Those men who attended antenatal clinics were more likely to be better educated, live in urban areas and have a professional job.

The data was drawn from the 2015 Afghanistan Demographic and Health Survey.


Alemi S, Nakamura K, Rahman M & Seino K (2020), Male participation in antenatal care and its influence on their pregnant partners’ reproductive health care utilization: insight from the 2015 Afghanistan Demographic and Health Survey, Journal of Biosocial Science

Header photo: EU Humanitarian Aid. Creative Commons.