Individual Religious Affiliation, Religious Community Context, and Reproductive Health Care in Mozambique

Boaventura Cau, Arizona State University

Most studies of religion and demographic behavior and outcomes in sub-Saharan Africa focus on effects of individual religious affiliation. In the present study we use recent data from a survey of over 2000 women and a survey of over 1000 religious congregations from southern Mozambique to examine the effects of women’s religious affiliation and religious community environment on two indicators of reproductive health care utilization: child delivery in a health care facility and the number of prenatal consultations. Our findings suggest a beneficial effect of affiliation with Catholic and Mission Protestant denominations for child delivery in a health facility and a favorable effect of affiliation with any organized religion for prenatal visits. We also find a significant positive association between the presence of Catholic and Mission Protestant denominations within community with child delivery in a health care unit, regardless of individual religious affiliation, but no clear pattern for the effect of religious community context on prenatal consultations.

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Presented in Poster Session 6