Introduction The continuum of care has recently received attention in maternal, newborn and child health. It can be an effective policy framework to ensure that every woman and child receives timely and appropriate services throughout the continuum. However, a commonly used measurement does not evaluate if a pair of woman and child complies with the continuum of care. This study assessed the continuum of care based on two measurements: continuous visits to health facilities (measurement 1) and receiving key components of services (measurement 2). It also explored individual-level and area-level factors associated with the continuum of care achievement and then investigated how the continuum of care differed across areas. Methods In this cross-sectional study in Ghana in 2013, the continuum of care achievement and other characteristics of 1401 pairs of randomly selected women and children were collected. Multilevel logistic regression was used to estimate the factors associated with the continuum of care and its divergence across 22 areas. results Throughout the pregnancy, delivery and post-delivery stages, 7.9% of women and children achieved the continuum of care through continuous visits to health facilities (measurement 1). Meanwhile, 10.3% achieved the continuum of care by receiving all key components of maternal, newborn and child health services (measurement 2). Only 1.8% of them achieved it under both measurements. Women and children from wealthier households were more likely to achieve the continuum of care under both measurements. Women's education and complications were associated with higher continuum of care services-based achievement. Variance of a random intercept was larger in the continuum of care services-based model than the visit-based model. Conclusions Most women and children failed to achieve the continuum of care in maternal, newborn and child health. Those who consistently visited health facilities did not necessarily receive key components of services.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Health Policy
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health