The cost of prenatal care attendance and pregnancy outcomes in low-income working women

J Obstet Gynecol Neonatal Nurs. Sep-Oct 2005;34(5):551-60. doi: 10.1177/0884217505280276.


Objective: To examine personal costs (dollar costs and time spent) associated with prenatal care (PNC) attendance and outcomes (gestation length, PNC adequacy, and birth weight) for low-income, working women (N = 165).

Design: Prospective, descriptive study.

Setting: Participants were recruited from a pre-natal clinic located at an inner city tertiary care center.

Participants: A convenience sample of 165 low-income, working women.

Main outcome measures: Personal costs were measured as dollar costs and time spent associated with PNC attendance. Perinatal outcomes were measured as gestation length, PNC adequacy, and birth weight.

Results: Per visit, the mean cost associated with PNC was 33.31 dollars (range 1-125.60 dollars, SD = 32.33 dollars) and the time needed to attend care was 228 min (20-720, SD = 205). Women delivered at 37.8 (18-42) weeks; 17.6% of the women received inadequate PNC, and 17.0% of the women delivered low-birth-weight newborns.

Conclusions: The findings indicated that personal costs associated with PNC attendance were not associated with inadequate care attendance.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Absenteeism
  • Adult
  • Birth Weight
  • Educational Status
  • Employment / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • Financing, Personal / economics*
  • Gestational Age
  • Health Services Accessibility / economics
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Parity
  • Pennsylvania
  • Poverty / economics*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Outcome / economics*
  • Pregnancy, High-Risk
  • Prenatal Care / economics*
  • Prenatal Care / standards
  • Prospective Studies
  • Time Factors
  • Transportation / economics
  • Urban Health / statistics & numerical data
  • Women, Working / education
  • Women, Working / statistics & numerical data*