This brief focuses on the health-seeking behaviour of the people in Chakaria, a rural area in Bangladesh. Information was collected from 1000 households during February 2007 on the type of illnesses the villages suffered from during the two weeks preceding the survey and their associated health seeking behaviour. The study examined gender variations in illness reporting, treatment seeking behaviour and decision making regarding treatment sought. Findings show that in Chakaria home remedy is commonly practiced for almost all diseases and is the second most frequently used treatment option. This report also focuses on the role of the informal healthcare providers, particularly the village doctors in the healthcare system. The village doctors were identified as key actors in the provision of healthcare in the area providing 65% of the services, irrespective of the type of disease. Use of health services, especially from the MBBS doctors on the other hand, was as low as 14%.
FHS Research Brief Bangladesh Issue 1, 4 pp.