A pilot project on the application of Geographic Information System (GIS) for analyzing and planning of Reproductive Health (RH) services was launched in Pattani, Thailand in 2001. The GIS technology was useful in analyzing and seeking clusters of houses of pregnant women who use TBAs services for delivery.
From the study, it was found that most pregnant women in all villages practiced modern way of family planning. Oral contraceptive was the most popular method used. Most pregnant women delivered in government hospitals or sub-district health centres.
From the analysis, it showed that distances from TBAs and health centre had some influence on pregnant women. It was found that those who lived near the Khok Pho community hospital would go to the hospital when delivered. Using TBAs’ services was found more in Muslim village and majority of them used their services in delivery. Almost all of them found TBAs’ services satisfactory.
It also showed that Islamic pregnant women who used the TBA’s services received lower education and were attached to agricultural sector. From the pilot study, it was recommended that the Pattani PPHO should consider about raising awareness on RH to these Muslim women and mobilizing them to use government services.
Because of the success of the pilot program, the GIS technology will be later used to develop health plans and help to manage other health concerns such as STD/HIV/AIDS protection, family planning, adolescent reproductive health, health education and epidemiology for common and rare disease control.
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Melissa Lawrence, Social Marketing Administrator, VERTICES, LLC