Disability and reproduction in Africa: A multi-methods invest igation to identify, describe and determine the sexual, reproductive and maternal healthcare needs and challenges of women with disability in Ghana

Persons with disabilities (PWDs) constitute 15% of the world’s population. PWDs are however one of the most marginalised groups, especially in many low-income settings of Africa. This disadvantage transcends several spheres: PWDs have generally poorer health, lower education, fewer economic opportunities and higher rates of poverty. Women with disability are particularly more likely to be poorer and have lower socio-economic status. In the context of sexual, reproductive and maternal health, PWDs have largely been ignored in research and programming in Africa. Such neglect has resulted in both poor theorisation of disability and reproduction, and a missed opportunity to understand the sexual, reproductive and maternal healthcare needs, healthcare seeking behaviours, and challenges of women with disability.

This research proposes to use ethnographic-style qualitative research methodology alongside quantitative survey to identify, describe and determine the sexual, reproductive and maternal healthcare needs, healthcare seeking behaviours, and challenges of women with disability in Ghana. Such a study is urgently needed to better understand disability and reproduction in Africa, and to develop more inclusive sexual, reproductive and maternal health services that have the potential to propel progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals’ objective of universal access to skilled comprehensive sexual, reproductive and maternal health services.

Project leader(s):
  • John Ganle (Department of Population, Family and Reproductive Health, University of Ghana)

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