Original Research

The unbooked maternity patient in an academic hospital in Durban

R. Gcaba, H.B. Brookes
Curationis | Vol 15, No 3 | a367 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/curationis.v15i3.367 | © 1992 R. Gcaba, H.B. Brookes | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 26 September 1992 | Published: 26 September 1992

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R. Gcaba,, South Africa
H.B. Brookes,, South Africa

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This paper examines the unbooked maternity patient in an academic hospital in Durban, Natal; This hospital is the biggest hospital serving the underprivileged population of this area. Of the 16000 annual deliveries in this hospital, about 12% are unbooked patients. The health belief model of Rosenstock, as interpreted by Mikhail and Cox’s interaction model of client health behaviour were used as a theoretical framework for this research. A qualitative case study methodology was undertaken and semi-structured interviews were conducted with unbooked mothers who had utilized appropriate health services in a previous pregnancy. The aim of such interviews was to explore reasons given by mothers for non-use of facilities in the current pregnancy. The basic trends reflected in the findings regarding non-utilization of health services were client instability, health service failure and socio-cultural constraints, The study is innovative and addresses the problem from a social-cultural and midwifery perspective.


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