The Cost of Antenatal Care In Nigeria: How Affordable Is It?
Maternal mortality rate in Nigeria is rather high. According to the World Bank, Nigeria reported about 814 maternal mortality cases/100,000 live births by 2015. To get a sense of Nigeria’s high number, fellow African countries like Ghana (319) and South Africa (138) reported much lower numbers. This article discusses the cost of antenatal care in Nigeria, and everything you should know about it.
To ensure that Nigerian women don’t lose their lives during childbirth, the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Health is working to encourage antenatal education across the country. Owing to this, pregnant women are made aware of the cost of antenatal care in Nigeriaand the things they need to do before the arrival of their baby.
What’s the cost of antenatal care in Nigeria?
The cost of antenatal care in Nigeriais subsidized by the government. This is to make sure that it is affordable to all Nigerians. It ranges from 25,000 to 35,000 thousand Naira for the whole pregnancy. Most of the tests are included in the package. Ultrasound costs vary from 4,000 – 5000 Naira.
How does antenatal care in Nigeria work?
Antenatal care in Nigeria refers to the care and periodic examinations given to a pregnant woman throughout the duration of her pregnancy. This preventive measure aims to make the pregnancy journey safer and provide early intervention if the need arises.
Why is antenatal care necessary?
- To reduce maternal mortality
- To make sure that the pregnancy results in a healthy mother and baby
- For the prevention and early detection of pregnancy complications
- Antenatal care can prevent and detect cases of birth defects
- This care addresses pregnancy needs in conjunction with the pregnant woman’s culture
Cost of Antenatal Care In Nigeria: Classes And Schedules
Pregnant women are expected to attend special antenatal classes. These group classes are not just about physically examining the woman to make sure she has a healthy pregnancy. The classes also educate you on health, sanitation, and social issues. Above all, antenatal classes prepare you for the birth of your baby and beyond.
Where to go for antenatal care
There’s no discussing the cost of antenatal care in Nigeriawithout talking about where to register for antenatal classes in Nigeria.
You can register for classes at Primary Healthcare Centres (PHC), government-approved private hospitals, and general hospitals. Midwives, Ob/Gyn, and general practitioners are in charge of caring for pregnant women.
How many visits do you need?
The World Health Organisation’s Focused Antenatal Care directive recommends a minimum of four visits for normal pregnancies. This is not to say that there can’t be more visits, just that that is the lowest number of visits allowed in healthy pregnancies.
There are mandatory tests during each visit in the focused antenatal care program to include:
Visit 1: 14 – 16 weeks
- Create a unique antenatal care and delivery plan
- Screen for anaemia and treat it
- Check for medical conditions that require early intervention
- Start prophylaxis for malaria and the use of blood boosters
Visit 2: 24 – 28 weeks
- Ask the woman for any concerns she might have
- Check for anaemia
- An Ultrasound to check for the wellbeing of the baby and for possible developmental disabilities as well as multiple pregnancy
Visit 3: 32 weeks
- Revisit birth plans
- Check for preeclampsia
- Screen for anaemia
- Screen for multiple pregnancy
Visit 4: 36 weeks
- Examine the pelvis for childbirth
- Test for anaemia
- Examine fetal presentation
- Revisit the birth plan
WHO’s focused antenatal care is practiced alongside the traditional antenatal care. The traditional type of care requires you to visit every four weeks up to when the pregnancy is 28 weeks old. From 28 – 36 weeks, you willis visit the hospital every 2 weeks. From the 36th week until delivery, you will have to go to the hospital every week.
The total number of visits under the traditional method is 13 visits.
Cost of Antennatal Care In Nigeria: Your Physical examination
Your doctor or midwife will ask for your:
- Blood pressure
In addition to these, physical examinations will check for:
The medical personnel will conduct the following physical examinations, too:
Cardiovascular and respiratory exam
The height of the fetus
Possible questions during antenatal appointments
- Past medical history
- Menstrual history
- Family history
- Social history
- Pregnancy history
- Surgical history
Tests and scans
Your doctor will carry out these tests every time you visit the hospital:
1. Urine test to ascertain:
2. Blood test for:
- Blood group
- Blood count
- Rhesus group
3. Other tests
Ultrasound will also be carried out to screen for:
Premature membrane rupture
Resources: World Bank
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