INFORMATION NEEDS AND UTILIZATION BY PREGNANT WOMEN IN KADUNA STATE (A CASE STUDY OF BARAU DIKKO TEACHING HOSPITAL)

ABSTRACT 
Information is vital to every aspect of life. Societies depend on information to build up their way of lives, likewise pregnant women. Readily available health information is vital for the growth of knowledgeable and effective systems for improving health concerns in the society. Information helps pregnant women to make informed decisions. A Mixed method approach was used to carry out the study. Questionnaire was used to collect data from 148 pregnant women from Baraudikko teaching hospital. The findings of the study revealed that antenatal lessons were the most used sources of health information and the least was newspaper and popular magazines. The information needs of pregnant women included healthy baby, diet, medication among others. The most highly rated need was having a healthy baby and the least was sex relationship. The main challenges that were identified include lack of funds, non-use of internet and attitudes of some midwives. The study recommends that management of the hospital set aside an office to be manned by a midwife at the entrance of every antenatal clinic where the midwife would be solely in charge of consultation on health information provision. Most pregnant women will prefer staying in the house due to lack of funds which negatively affect their information behaviour. The study recommends that government pays more attention to the free maternal health policy to enhance access to quality healthcare. 

CHAPTER ONE 
INTRODUCTION 
1.1 Background to the study 
Information has been accepted and recognised as a survival input of man. It plays a significant role in every aspect of life irrespective of the situation or circumstance. According to Alemna and Skouby (2000), information is essential to every aspect of society. Information is considered a resource that is naturally needed in all human activities. One can readily conclude that information is essential in human life, thus a rudimentary human requirement which has overriding importance to every person (Olarongbe et al., 2013). Popoola (2006) defined information as “facts, news, opinions, messages, symbols, signals, and processed data that are capable of improving the knowledge state of a user on a random phenomenon”. This knowledge may possibly contain accounts of people in a society that have been widely accepted as a social network. 

Alemna (2000) is of the view that information in our modern civilization is considered a strategic resource that has equal importance as land, capital, labour, and entrepreneurship. To buttress this fact, he emphasized that, the twenty-first century had witnessed outstanding development as evident in the significant increase in technology. The technological advancement has led to information overloads which makes it difficult for users to choose from the many information provided online. This makes researchers, students, professionals, scientist and pregnant women to try to sift through several sources of information until the right information is obtained. 

Wilson (2000) notes that an individual may come across manual information in the form of a newspaper or a library or with computer-based systems such as the web, in the process of looking for information. Information could be obtained from different sources, including journals, books, friends/relatives/peers, and persons at the workplace, professional advisors, health promotional programmes or the Internet. Despite the abundance of information sources including health information sources, the health of pregnant women remains a foremost concern in the world. 

Information behaviour according to (Wilson, 2000) is the totality of human behaviour in relation to sources and channels of information, including both active and passive information seeking, and information use. It defines the way people seek, manage, give, need and use information in diverse situations. Information behaviour is the micro-level of behaviour employed by the searcher in interacting with information systems of all kinds, be it between the seeker and the system, or the pure method of creating and following up on a search. Bates (2010) also described information behaviour as the ways in which people interact with information, especially the means through which people try to find and use information. For the purpose of this study, information behaviour can be described as the many ways in which pregnant women seek information for use and conduct searches as well as make informed decisions concerning pregnancy-related issues. 

Wilen (2016) observed that pregnant women having access to reliable and factual information about pregnancy is crucial. Midwives during antenatal, therefore, must make available latest researched information which will empower pregnant women in informing their choices about health, bodies, and babies. The absence of useful information in the life of a pregnant woman will lead to distress. The absence of information at the antenatal will compel those who can afford it to seek voluntary classes at private health institutions. The availability of information helps pregnant women to manage mixed feelings about pregnancy childbearing or labour and post-partum depression. 

The health of a woman is very essential to the socio-economic settings of developing countries. Women are naturally caregivers, and for this reason, it is important they maintain some control regarding health decisions. Most often women are responsible for seeking health information about themselves, their children and other family members. 

The pressure of looking for information is high for first-time mothers than women who have gotten pregnant and have more than one baby. The kind of help women get in terms of information gives them the assurance that they are ready for the transition to parenthood. The hunt for information during pregnancy can increase the health awareness of pregnant women. If a pregnant woman is able to acquire this kind of knowledge, she could interact easily with health service providers, and undertake preventive health care behaviours as well as improved self-care capabilities. 

Pregnant women need to search and acquire information necessary for a healthy living if they want to adequately live a healthy life and ensure the safe delivery of their babies. The hunt for information, however, begins with the identification of a deficit in knowledge, for which the individual makes a determination to bridge. Unfortunately, the abundance of information due to technological advancement makes it difficult for pregnant women who try seeking for information themselves. Most pregnant women use whatever information they come across concerning pregnancy without their evaluation, they assume that whatever is put out as information is from a trusted source hence reliable. Midwives must constantly search for current and credible information online and from researched sources to keep them abreast with current issues concerning pregnancy. When acquired information that is reliable is passed onto their patients, they may in one way or the other be able to compare and differentiate the trusted sources from the untrusted sources (Wilen, 2016). 

1.2 Problem statement 
It is estimated that about eighty percent of maternal deaths that happen in most developing countries are as a result of avoidable causes which could have been prevented if women had timely access to and proper use of information and skilled maternal services (UN Millennium Project, 2011). The Nigeria Health service report, (2006) equally identifies the lack of information and inadequate knowledge as a major factor accounting for the delays in timely response to early warning signs and danger signals during labour. 

A lot of studies have been conducted around the world over on information seeking behaviour of pregnant women. Ashavaree (2013), Katherine et al., (2016), Chewe (2015), Mwangakala (2016) 

In Nigeria, a number of studies have been conducted on health and pregnancy-related issues. Abdallah (2015) in her study examined the perceptions of women in the Ga-Mashie community regarding the use of maternal health healthcare services with special reference to the free maternal health service. Atinga and Baku (2013) also researched on the determinants of antenatal care quality in Nigeria. Kanton (2015) looked at the availability and use of essential emergency obstetric care services in the local government areas og delta in Nigeria. Ofori-Asenso (2016) researched on Hepatitis B in Nigeria. A lot of factors were identified as the possible causes of mortality and morbidity in pregnant women which contributed to policies being put in place to ensure these are dealt with. None of these researches, however, focused on the Information needs and utilization by pregnant woman in Nigeria. This study, therefore, focused on examining Information needs and utilization by pregnant women in Kaduna state. A casual interaction with some pregnant women at Baraudikko teaching hospital revealed their ignorance, apprehension and little knowledge about the state in which they were. The results of this interaction serve as major motivation to the researcher to carry out this research. 

1.3 Purpose of the Study 
The Purpose of this study was to examine Information needs and utilization by pregnant women in Kaduna state with the view to identifying problems and proposing solutions to them. 

1.4 Specific Objectives of the Study 
1. To examine the information needs of pregnant women attending baraudikko teaching hospital. 

2. To examine sources of health information for pregnant women in Kaduna state. 

3. To examine the information seeking pattern of pregnant women in Kaduna state. 

4. To ascertain challenges pregnant women face in accessing information in Kaduna state. 

1.5 Scope and limitations of the study 
It will be ideal to cover all the hospital in the whole northern region of Nigeria but due to limited resources and time, the study was conducted at a hospital in Kaduna state which is the Baraudikko teaching hospital, 

1.6 Significance of the Study 
Pregnancy is a normal phenomenon which women have to go through in order to give life to another. However, issues surrounding it poses either a threat or an uncomfortable situation for individuals who find themselves in this condition. 

The study brings to the fore the need to frequently provide relevant information for use by pregnant women at all times. Sources of information on pregnancy, access, evaluation, and use by pregnant women appear not to be a priority of health promotional programmes in most less developed countries of which Nigeria is not an exception. Health information most of the time is offered only when there is a serious disease outbreak. The study will not only help policy makers in formulating policies at the national level but also at the regional, municipal, district and the hospital' levels at large. This will assist in making provision for pregnant women in terms of their needs 

It is expected that this study will offer new understanding on the subject of information behaviour of women attending antenatal clinic as this would empower pregnant women to be more knowledgeable in hunting for information that is relevant to their needs. 

The findings of the research can serve also as a reference material and areas that have been suggested for further studies when researched on can broaden the existing knowledge of pregnant women and other researchers. 

Finally, this study will contribute to knowledge because it will help make provision for pregnant women in terms of their needs and expectations not only in Kaduna state but Nigeria at large.

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Item Type: Project Material  |  Attribute: 65 pages  |  Chapters: 1-5
Format: MS Word  |  Price: N3,000  |  Delivery: Within 30Mins.
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