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Family Planning and Women’s and Children’s Health: Long-Term Consequences of an Outreach Program in Matlab, Bangladesh

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  • Shareen Joshi

    ()

  • T. Schultz

    ()

Abstract

We analyze the impact of an experimental maternal and child health and family planning program that was established in Matlab, Bangladesh, in 1977. Village data from 1974, 1982, and 1996 suggest that program villages experienced a decline in fertility of about 17 %. Household data from 1996 confirm that this decline in “surviving fertility” persisted for nearly two decades. Women in program villages also experienced other benefits: increased birth spacing, lower child mortality, improved health status, and greater use of preventive health inputs. Some benefits also diffused beyond the boundaries of the program villages into neighboring comparison villages. These effects are robust to the inclusion of individual, household, and community characteristics. We conclude that the benefits of this reproductive and child health program in rural Bangladesh have many dimensions extending well beyond fertility reduction, which do not appear to dissipate rapidly after two decades. Copyright Population Association of America 2013

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Demography.

Volume (Year): 50 (2013)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Pages: 149-180

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Handle: RePEc:spr:demogr:v:50:y:2013:i:1:p:149-180

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Web page: http://www.springer.com/economics/journal/13524

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Related research

Keywords: Fertility; Family planning; Health and development; Program evaluation; Bangladesh;

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References

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  1. Elizabeth Frankenberg & Duncan Thomas, 2001. "Women’s health and pregnancy outcomes: Do services make a difference?," Demography, Springer, vol. 38(2), pages 253-265, May.
  2. Fogel,Robert William, 2004. "The Escape from Hunger and Premature Death, 1700–2100," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521004886.
  3. Schultz, T. Paul, 2007. "Population Policies, Fertility, Women’s Human Capital, and Child Quality," IZA Discussion Papers 2815, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Deborah DeGraff, 1991. "Increasing contraceptive use in Bangladesh: The role of demand and supply factors," Demography, Springer, vol. 28(1), pages 65-81, February.
  5. Munshi, Kaivan & Myaux, Jacques, 2006. "Social norms and the fertility transition," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 1-38, June.
  6. T. Paul Schultz, 1980. "An Economic Interpretation of the Decline in Fertiliiy in a Rapidly Developing Country: Consequences of Development and Family Planning," NBER Chapters, in: Population and Economic Change in Developing Countries, pages 209-288 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Ai, Chunrong & Norton, Edward C., 2003. "Interaction terms in logit and probit models," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 123-129, July.
  8. Schultz, T Paul, 1994. "Human Capital, Family Planning, and Their Effects on Population Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(2), pages 255-60, May.
  9. Rosenzweig, Mark R. & Wolpin, Kenneth I., 1982. "Governmental interventions and household behavior in a developing country : Anticipating the unanticipated consequences of social programs," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 209-225, April.
  10. Edward Miguel & Michael Kremer, 2004. "Worms: Identifying Impacts on Education and Health in the Presence of Treatment Externalities," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 72(1), pages 159-217, 01.
  11. Strauss, John & Thomas, Duncan, 2008. "Health over the Life Course," Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier.
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