The impact of including husbands in antenatal health education services on maternal health practices in urban Nepal: results from a randomized controlled trial

Health Educ Res. 2007 Apr;22(2):166-76. doi: 10.1093/her/cyl060. Epub 2006 Jul 19.


Observational studies suggest that including men in reproductive health interventions can enhance positive health outcomes. A randomized controlled trial was designed to test the impact of involving male partners in antenatal health education on maternal health care utilization and birth preparedness in urban Nepal. In total, 442 women seeking antenatal services during second trimester of pregnancy were randomized into three groups: women who received education with their husbands, women who received education alone and women who received no education. The education intervention consisted of two 35-min health education sessions. Women were followed until after delivery. Women who received education with husbands were more likely to attend a post-partum visit than women who received education alone [RR = 1.25, 95% CI = (1.01, 1.54)] or no education [RR = 1.29, 95% CI = (1.04, 1.60)]. Women who received education with their husbands were also nearly twice as likely as control group women to report making >3 birth preparations [RR = 1.99, 95% CI = (1.10, 3.59)]. Study groups were similar with respect to attending the recommended number of antenatal care checkups, delivering in a health institution or having a skilled provider at birth. These data provide evidence that educating pregnant women and their male partners yields a greater net impact on maternal health behaviors compared with educating women alone.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Health Education / methods
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Maternal Health Services / methods
  • Nepal
  • Patient Education as Topic / methods*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Trimester, Second
  • Prenatal Care / methods*
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Spouses*