Traditional Birth Attendants and Childbirth in Kenya: A Case of Kitui West Sub County

Main Article Content



The first objective of this research was to explore the role played by traditional birth attendants (TBAs) during pregnancy and childbirth. The second objective was to establish perspectives of pregnant women regarding the role played by TBAs during childbirth. Eight TBAs out of 12 were selected using simple random sampling technique. These 8 TBAs were drawn from the environs of 10 sampled health facilities. To calculate the sample size for the pregnant women to be interviewed about their perspectives towards TBAs from the 10 sampled health facilities , this formula was used, 1230 x 15/100=184.5 rounded up to 185. According to 2009 census, the population of women at child bearing age (15 – 49 years) was 1230 in Kitui West Sub-County (KNBS et al.; 2009). The final sample size for pregnant women was 187 as shown under the discussion on sampling techniques. An in depth individual interview guide was used to gather information from the 8 TBAs and 165 pregnant women. Unstructured interview guide was used to gather information from 22 respondents who formed focus group discussion (FGD). To make a meaning from the raw data, it was transcribed and emerging themes and patterns according the objective of the study were picked. The Chi-square test analysis showed that more than a half of the women preferred to deliver at home assisted by a TBA. (χ2=1.572; df=2; p=0.036) where p=0.05. This was confirmed by the fact that 37 percent out of 135 respondents who attended ANC clinic and 90 percent out of 30 respondents who did not attend ANC clinic delivered at home assisted by TBAs.


Download data is not yet available.


Metrics Loading ...

Article Details

How to Cite
MBUTU, P., GICHUHI, D. W., & NYAMONGO, D. G. (2018). Traditional Birth Attendants and Childbirth in Kenya: A Case of Kitui West Sub County. International Journal for Innovation Education and Research, 6(5), 01-18. Retrieved from


Agus, Y. & Horiuchi, S. (2012). Factors influencing the use of antenatal care in rural West Sumatra, Indonesia, Sumatra: BioMed Central Ltd. Retrieved from: on 29, December 2017.

Choguya, Z. (2014). Traditional Birth Attendants and Policy Ambivalence in Zimbabwe. Retrieved from on 7, November 2017.

Ebuehi, O., Roberts, A., & Inem, V. (2006). Perception and utilization of traditional birth attendants by pregnant women attending primary health care clinics in a rural Local Government Area in Ogun State, Nigeria, Journal of Reproductive Health. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm on 28 January 2018.

Falle, T. Y., Mullany, L. C., Thatte, N. Khatry, S. K., LeClerq, S. C., Darmstadt, G. L., Katz, J. & Tielsch J. M. (2009). Potential Role of Traditional Birth Attendants in Neonatal Healthcare in Rural Southern Nepal: Journal of Health Population and Nutrition, Vol. (1), pp53-61. Retrieved from on 12 September 2017

KNBS, World Bank, & UNICEF (2014). Ministry of Health & Population Profile Retrieved from http://www.reproductivehealth on 15, September 2016.

KNBS (2009). Retrieved from on 15, January 2016.

Kumbani, L., Bjune, G. & Chirwa, E. (2013). Why Some Women Fail To Give Birth At Health Facilities: A Qualitative Study of Women’s Perceptions of Perinatal Care from Rural Southern Malawi. Journal of Reproductive Health 10 (9). Retrieved from on 10, September 2017.

Magoma, M., Requejo, J., Campbell, O., Cousens, S. and Filippi, V (2010). High ANC Coverage and Low Skilled Attendance in a Rural Tanzanian District. Retrieved from on 12 January 2018.

Milmo, L. (2013). Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health. Turkey: Published by World Health Organization 2013.

Owino, J. & Legault, F. (2013). A Practice Theory for Antenatal Care in Rural Kenya. The International Journal of Social Sciences, 10 (1), 2. Retrieved from on 23, August 2017.

Rahmani, Z. & Brekke, M. (2013). Antenatal and obstetric care in Afghanistan. Retrieved from on 22, August 2015.

Roro, M. A., Hassen, E. M., Lemma, A. M., Gebreyesus, S. H., & Afework, M. F. (2014). Why Do Women not Deliver in Health Facilities?: A qualitative Study of the Community Perspectives in South Central Ethiopia. Retrieved from on 7, January 2016.

Tuguminize, L: (2009). The role of TBAs in Midwifery Care: The Ugandan experience. Retrieved from on 22, August 2016.
WHO, UNICEF, UNFPA, World Bank (2010). WHO, UNICEF, UNFPA, World Bank. Trends in Maternal Mortality, 1990 to 2008. Geneva: World Health Organization