How do media access and mobile phone use affect maternal healthcare service utilization in Bangladesh? Moderated mediation effects of socioeconomic factors

Md Ruhul Kabir

Research output: Contribution to conferenceConference paperpeer-review


Background: Exposure to traditional media (TV, radio, and newspapers) and the use of mobile as an interpersonal communication tool allow for a variety of information provision. The purpose of this study is to investigate how women's media and mobile access affect maternal health service (MHS) utilization. The study also aims to look into the moderated mediation effects of socioeconomic variables on the association mentioned above.

Methods: The study analyzed reproductive and media data of 5,011 ever-married women extracted from the latest nationally representative Bangladesh Demographic and Health Survey. Hierarchical logistic regression and moderated mediation analysis are performed to determine the association.

Results: Only 26.9% of women used mobile for health service use, while more than 55% had media access. Media access is significantly associated with all three types of MHS use; mobile usage also has a significant association with antenatal and delivery care. When women have both access to media and mobile, the likelihood of delivering in a health facility increased by 1.82 times (AOR: 1.82, 95%CI: 1.51, 2.20) which is slightly better than having access to only one type of media channel. Women's education, household wealth, place of residence, religion, and current working status are among the socioeconomic factors associated with access to media and mobile. Women's education mediates the relationship of media and MHS; however, the mediation effect of women (β: .45; LLCI: .21, ULCI: .68) on the association of media and place of delivery is seen to be moderated by household wealth. Women who belong to well-off families moderates positively (Effect: .33, 95%CI: .27, .40) the education effect of media and where to deliver. Place of residence, another moderator, significantly moderates (Effect: .09, BootLLCI: .02, BootULCI: .16) the mediation effect of women's education on the association of media and antenatal care visits; women living in urban areas seems to have positively moderated the education effects on the mentioned association.

Conclusions: Provision of media access and mobile use indicate better utilization of MHS in Bangladesh, and women's education mediates these relationships via the influence of household wealth and area of residence. Therefore, while planning interventions to increase MHS use, its relationships with the media and mobile use should be extrapolated. The collective use of these channels could be a catalyst for the success of health promotion initiatives to improve women's health behaviors, build community capacity, and create mass awareness that supports the optimal use of MHS in Bangladesh.


ConferenceInternational Association for Media and Communication Research Online Conference (IAMCR 2022)
Internet address

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Maternity and Midwifery

User-Defined Keywords

  • Media access
  • Mobile use
  • Maternal health
  • Moderated mediation
  • Hierarchical regression
  • Bangladesh


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