The Effect of Family Planning Exposure on Fertility Choices and Reproductive Health Care in Rural Pakistan
This paper investigates whether family planning exposure, specifically the Lady Health Worker Program (LHWP), has any effect on women’s fertility choice and utilization of reproductive health care in rural Pakistan. Exploiting variations in program exposure across regions, this paper presents reduced form and instrumental variables estimates of the impact of family planning exposure on women’s fertility choice and reproductive health care utilization. The analysis suggests that, even in the presence of strong son preferences, increasing family planning exposure reduces the probability of women to have another child. Moreover, family planning exposure increases the probability of more antenatal care visits, more antenatal checkup by skilled professionals, and higher chance of delivery in health centers. Lastly, heterogeneity effect of family planning exposure in age and education is observed.
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