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Awareness and perception regarding PCPNDT Act and gender preference among mothers of under-five attending immunization clinic

Sonal R Deshpande, Pragati G Rathod, Sharad B Mankar, Uday W Narlawar.


Abstract

Background: Falling sex ratio is signaling precipitation of demographic catastrophe in India. Female feticide, male child preference, and gender inequities are to be blamed.

Objective: To study awareness and perception regarding Preconception and Prenatal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) Act among mothers of under-five attending immunization clinic and gender preference among them.

Materials and Methods: A Cross-sectional study was carried out among 200 mothers of under-five attending immunization clinic at Government Medical College, Nagpur, during April–June 2014. Data were collected by interview using semistructured pro forma after obtaining written consent of mothers. Data were presented in percentage, mean, range with SD, and X2-test as test of significance.

Result: Majority of mothers 150 (75%) were aware about decreasing girls in India. One hundred and sixty-one (80.5%) mothers were aware about prenatal sex determination, and 61 (30.5%) knew that sonography is used for this purpose. Awareness about PCPNDT Act was 65%. Awareness was significantly associated with higher education, upper socioeconomic class, and working status. Although 85 (42.5%) mothers knew that punishment under PCPNDT is in the form of jail or monetary fine, none were aware about the correct penalty. Of 83 mothers desirous of more children, 33 (40%) preferred to have male child; while only 14 (17%) had preference for a female child. Preference for male child was significantly associated with the birth of previous female child.

Conclusion: Awareness regarding PCPNDT Act is high among those with higher education, upper socioeconomic class, and working mothers. Preference for male child is significantly associated with the birth of previous female child.

Key words: Awareness, PCPNDT, gender preference






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