University of Massachusetts Medical School Faculty Publications


Working hard: women's self-care practices in Ghana

UMMS Affiliation

Graduate School of Nursing

Publication Date


Document Type



Cultural Characteristics; Female; Focus Groups; Ghana; Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice; Humans; Infant Mortality; Infant, Newborn; Interviews as Topic; Life Style; Pregnancy; Pregnancy Outcome; Prenatal Care; Self Care; Social Environment; Urban Population


International Public Health | Maternal and Child Health | Public Health | Women's Health


Women's health care providers have noted an increased infant mortality rate among Ghanaian immigrants. We conducted focus groups with 17 women in Ghana. We asked them how they maintained their health both before and during pregnancy. When discussing their health, women repeatedly described the conditions or context of their daily lives and the traditional practices that they used to stay healthy. Knowledge of women's lives, the health care system that they previously used, and their cultural practices can be utilized by health care providers to more fully assess their patients and design more culturally appropriate care for this group of women.

DOI of Published Version



Health Care Women Int. 2013;34(8):651-73. doi: 10.1080/07399332.2012.736574. Epub 2013 Mar 28. Link to article on publisher's site

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Health care for women international

PubMed ID