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Perception Determinants of Women and Healthcare Providers on the Effects of Oil Pollution on Maternal and Newborn Outcomes in the Niger Delta, Nigeria

Authors Oghenetega OB, Ojengbede OA, Ana GREE

Received 21 October 2019

Accepted for publication 20 February 2020

Published 25 March 2020 Volume 2020:12 Pages 197—205

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJWH.S235536

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Elie Al-Chaer


Onome B Oghenetega,1 Oladosu A Ojengbede,2 Godson REE Ana3

1Pan African University Life and Earth Sciences Institute, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria; 2Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, College of Medicine, University College Hospital, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria; 3Department of Environmental Health, Faculty of Public Health, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria

Correspondence: Oladosu A Ojengbede
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, College of Medicine, University College Hospital, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria
Tel +23 480 3442 6047
Email ladosu2002@yahoo.co.uk

Purpose: This qualitative study examined the perception determinants of women and their local healthcare providers on exposure to oil pollution and its adverse effects on maternal and newborn outcomes in selected communities with history of oil spillage and gas flaring in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria.
Participants and Methods: Thirty-nine participants were used in this study, which included community women leaders (n=2), women of reproductive ages (n=32) and healthcare providers (n= 3 female nurses and 2 male doctors) in the selected communities in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria. The participants were chosen through purposive sampling. Focus group discussions (FGDs) and in-depth interviews (IDIs) were conducted among the participants and recorded in line with research protocols. The recordings of the FGDs and IDIs were transcribed, coded and analysed using Nvivo 10.
Results: Four major themes emerged relating to the perception determinants of women and healthcare workers on the effects of oil pollution on maternal and newborn outcomes. The first theme relates to the fact that personal experiences influence risk perception. The second theme associated perception with cultural norms, values and practices. The third theme shows that perception is influenced by the level of environmental threat or hazard, while the fourth theme borders around the influence of hospital-related factors on risk perception.
Conclusion: The study strongly suggested that both women and local healthcare providers perceived that oil pollution could have adverse effects on maternal and newborn outcomes. However, their perceptions were influenced by the cultural beliefs of the people, individual experiences, environmental and hospital-related factors. We believe that increasing awareness on the importance of attending antenatal care during pregnancy, making hospital charges affordable for pregnant women, and general environment conduciveness will improve maternal and newborn health in communities affected by oil pollution in the Niger Delta region.

Keywords: oil spill, gas flaring, perception, maternal and newborn health, Niger Delta

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