Monday, August 21, 2017

Rise in use of contraception reflects hope

 

By Nuzulack Dausen @nuzulack ndausen@thecitizen.co.tz

The use of modern methods of family planning among women has increased nearly fivefold in two decades pushing fertility rate down by one child per woman in the country.

Official data shows that most of this growth has occurred in the last decade a sign that majority now appreciates the benefit of controlling childbearing.

According to the recent Tanzania Demographic and Health Survey (TDHS) 2015/16, the use of modern method of family planning has increased from seven per cent in 1991/1992 to 32 per cent in 2015/16.

In the same period of 24 years, fertility rate, according to the report by National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), has declined from six children per woman to five children.

The report which surveyed 13,266 women and 3,514 men across the country with ages between 15-49 years, says the use of family planning methods is higher among sexually active women with more than half using any method of controlling childbearing.

“The male condoms and injectables are popular methods among this group with 15 per cent of each using it followed by implants at eight per cent and pills at six per cent,” reads a part of the report.

Despite that success, the report reveals that the use of family planning methods by married women increases with economic status.

The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) says the use of family planning methods including contraception, benefit women and families throughout the world.

“Contraceptives prevent unintended pregnancies, reduces the number of abortions, and lowers the incidence of death and disability related to complications of pregnancy and childbirth,” says UNFPA.

According to family planning open data published on Hurumap website, in 2013, there were 4.68 million women aged between 15 and 49 years who were using family planning methods.

In July this year, the Minister of Health, Community development, Gender, Elderly and Children, Ummy Mwalimu said to reduce maternal and child deaths, the government plans to extend access to life saving family planning methods to 4.2 million more women and girls by 2020.

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