Mothers with non-western background closing maternity care gap

09/01/2013 15:00

Nearly all women who give birth in the Netherlands make use of maternity care. However, relatively fewer women with a non-western background than native Dutch women do so. The share of women with a non-western foreign background who make use of maternity care has increased though. Most of the women interviewed were very satisfied with the maternity care they received.

Average 39.5 hours of maternity care

In 2010-2011, 10 percent of women in the Netherlands aged 15-49 years gave birth to one or more babies. Of these women, 95 percent had one baby, the remaining 5 percent had two or even three babies in these two years. Nearly 95 percent of the mothers received maternity care after childbirth. On average they received 39.5 hours of maternity care.

Fewer home care hours after hospital births

In the case of home births, 99 percent of mothers made use of maternity care. On average they received 44.3 hours of care. Relatively fewer women who had their babies in hospital used maternity care: 94 percent, for 38.1 hours on average. This is lower because mothers are entitled fewer hours of maternity care for every day they spend in hospital after the birth.

Maternity care by birth venue, 2010-2011

Maternity care by birth venue, 2010-2011

Fewer non-western mothers use maternity care

Relatively fewer women with a non-western foreign background make use of maternity care: 89 percent. For native Dutch women this is 96 percent. Mothers with a non-western background also receive the care for a shorter period: 29.0 hours, compared with 41.9 hours for native Dutch women. Although non-western women are more likely to give birth in hospital, this explains only a small part the difference with native mothers.

Maternity care by ethnic origin, 2010-2011

Maternity care by ethnic origin, 2010-2011

Increase in care for non-western mothers

The share of women with a non-western foreign background using maternity care has increased. In 2001-2003, for example, only 77 percent of non-western mothers made use of maternity care. Since 2007-2009 this share has been around 90 percent.

Share of mothers receiving maternity care by ethnic origin

Share of mothers receiving maternity care by ethnic origin

Satisfied with maternity care

Overall, the interviewed mothers are very satisfied with the care they receive. No fewer than 97 percent gave the care a mark of 6 out of 10. On average the mothers gave maternity care after their most recent birth 8.1 out of 10.

Marieke Houben-van Herten