Family Planning Methods In Rural Communities
This study is uniformed and designed to unveil and reveal Family Planning Methods in Rural Communities of Enugu State with particular References to Aji In Igbo Eze North L.G.A. the researcher assessed the acceptance of the different methods of family planning in Aji. Examined the extent of awareness of the existence family planning methods by the peoples of Aji community. Evaluated the effect family planning on the well-being of the family in Aji. The study also examined the relationship between family planning and the well-being of the family.
Data for the study was sourced from two main sources which include Primary and Secondary sources of data Collection. Primary data: questionnaires and oral interviews were used to collect information from the respondents. Secondary data: journals, and other relevant materials relating to the area of my investigation will be review. Extensive literature review was carried out on the direct literature and indirect literature on books, journals and past works. The research instrument used in this study includes oral interview and questionnaire.
The questionnaire is structural as to contain both close and open ended question. Simple tables and percentages were used in treatment of data analysis. At the end of the analysis the researcher observed that the method of family planning used by the people of Aji community are Traditional Methods, Contraceptive Measures, Conventional Methods and Withdrawal Methods. It was also observed that the people of Aji community are aware of the existing family planning methods. The study shows that family planning has positive impact on the well-being of the people of Aji community.
It was also discovered that there is significant relationship between family planning and the well-being of the families in Aji community. Based on the findings the research her recommends that couples should plan their families by adhering to the practice prescribed by the planned parenthood federation and whose services are also given free in family planning clinics all over the country. Sex education should be encouraged in our community in particular and in our societies in general so as to minimize the rate of teenage pregnancies and child dumping.
1.1 Background to the Study
The term family planning has been on the lips of many in this nation for some time now but not much is known about it. The family is a social institution that unites individual into cooperative groups that over see bearing and raising of new children conventionally, the main aim of involving oneself into family life is for procreation, to bear and raise or socialize children into the society.
It is regarded that family exist in every society but in different forms. Family as a smallest may start in the form of courtship leading to the marriage life.
Family is a social institution that is responsible for procreation and raising of new brand of human being in the society.
According to Pope John Paul II (1981) the family is a common unity of person and the smallest unit. “As such it is an institution fundamental to life of every society” thus the family consist of a husband, wife and their children, the family live together, pools its resources and work together and produce offspring. The structure of the family varies from society to society. The stability of any nation is very much dependant on its families, it is therefore believed that future and progress of any society bear on the live and development of the young one’s in the family. It is generally felt that family planning is in the interest of development of the countries expiring high rate in order to avoid population explosion in the future.
In Nigeria, the treat is one of population growth being excessively higher than the rate which the country can provide the required service. If the quality of life is to be raised, population growth needs to be consider in planning socio economic development. Amenties have to be constant increased to make them available to large number of people looking at it in individuals prospect. The problem is even more critical, the ultimate objective is to bring about sustained improvement in the well being of the individual and express in all aspects of human right which include the right enough good food of the right kind of nutrition, good health education and shelter.
¨ The right to employment, whether self, family wage employment.
¨ The right to regulate family size and space children so that each child born is a wanted child who can be given a good start in life.
With the prevailing level of socio-economic development many of these right are not at reach of the country especially those in rural area like Aji. Family planning is considered necessary because it affords couples and individual the opportunity to realize their potentials and make significant contribution to the socio-economic development process of the country.
Family planning was introduced as a result of one growth in population of people, the rate of which people procreate has continuously increased as a result of not prepared for birth due to unplanned pregnancy.
This will help various married couple girls under age of 18yrs and women over 35yrs. Men who wish to space or limit their pregnancies etc to realize their potentials and to make significant contribution of the entire nation. The advocate of both population control and abortion tells us that the world is becoming over crowded that in another few hundred years. There won’t be standing space on the earth.
However, since the introduction of family planning came into existence in Nigeria, the government and some non-government agencies has made a lot of effort to see to it that the establishment and setting up of birth control clinics until several brunches around the country like here in Nigeria the planned parenthood federation of Nigeria (PPFN) unaffiliated of international planned parenthood federation.
Even though, trends of increase in contraceptive use have been acknowledged widely (RAND, 1998; Ann et. al, 2002), currently an estimated 650 million or 62 percent of the more than one billion married or in-union women in reproductive age are using contraceptives (RAND, 1998). Whereas in the developed nations, 70 percent of married women use contraceptive only 60 percent can be attributed in developing nations.
The situation in Africa is as low as 25 percent, the lowest among developing regions in the world (RAND, 1998; UNFPA, 2001). In West Africa, about 36 percent of women are using contraceptives and this rate varies from a low percentage of 22 percent in Mali, 26 percent in Togo, 32 percent in Burkina Faso, and 33 percent in Nigeria (Dona et. al., 2008, UNDP, 2008).
In Nigeria, a country with multiple ethnic sets and religious groupings, efforts made by the Ministry of Health (MOH) and other agencies on the use of contraceptives have resulted in a general increase over the last two decades (Duodo et.al., 1998, Ann et al 2002, UNDP, 2008). There has also been a drop in fertility rate from 6.4 percent in the 1970s to 4.4 percent in 2005 (Duodu et.al., 1998, UNDP, 2008). Currently, a national contraceptive use of 33 per cent has been estimated even though 43 percent of married women in the country desire to space their children and an additional 24 percent need to limit births. The disparity of use of family planning methods among the urban and rural, and rich and poor puts many women in most deprived settings at a disadvantage (GSS, 2003).
Aji In Igbo Eze North L.G.A in Enugu state of Nigeria implements and adheres to the policies and programme interventions of the MOH and other agencies in relation to increasing access to reproductive health services including family planning. These policies and programmes reflect in the Information Education and Communication strategies coupled with service counseling and outreach programmes that are instituted in the Igbo Eze North L.G.A. The Igbo Eze North L.G.A, largely rural and served predominantly by a Catholic Hospital, has consistently recorded low contraceptive rates in the region. The obvious consequences of the low use of contraceptives in the Igbo Eze North L.G.A on the social and economic development of the inhabitant especially mothers and children are of major concern.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The family planning as an element of primary health care is still poorly practiced worldwide. Looking at the problem of unwanted pregnancies high rate of abortion and its complications as well as uncontrolled population increase; the estimated population of the world in 1995 was 5,702 billion and the population growth rate was 1.5% per year. This increase in population was substantially adding 2,340,000 more people every day and about 10,000 more people every hour. Should this growth rate of 1.5% continue the population of the world will be 12.3 billion in 100 years to come. (Source family planning method and practice in Africa CDC 1999). Also the UNDP report 2011 by Administrator Helen Clarke put Uganda population growth rate at 3.2% the highest in the world.(UNPD website). On other hand the Uganda demographic health survey (UDHS) of 200 Contraceptive rate (CPR),Which refers to the percentage of married women who were using any method of family planning was a dismal 24% At 41% Uganda’s unmet need for family planning was the third highest rate in the world. ( Family Planning Association of Uganda 2010 website.). In Mayuge district the total number of women in child bearing age in 2012was 71351 and the number of women using the contraceptive in child bearing age was 5541 in 2012 giving percentage of 7.7% (mayuge District annual health report 2012).
The problems of unmet need of family planning for the less developed nations is considered as a major impediment to the development of its people, especially the vulnerable groups including women and children. The multiplicity of factors and the complex nature of the environments of developing nations, regarding access, influences decision on health services, and contraceptive measures for that matter, even though extensively examined by many scholars, have still not been subdued.
Even though the trends of family planning indicators, total fertility rate and contraceptive use in Nigeria have been improving, there is a challenge of increasing access to many women who desire to limit or space births. The non-use of contraceptives by these women, has a commensurate effect on their total well-being and that of their children. The increase in maternal mortality rate from 210/100,000 live births in the 1990’s to a projected 560 in 2005 (UNDP, 2008) is an indication of the consequence of complication resulting in pregnancies usually unplanned and unintended. In addition, risk of Human Immune Virus (HIV) and Sexually Transmitted Infections (S T I) abound.
This trend is even higher in rural areas where there is largely limited access to quality care.
Aji In Igbo Eze North L.G.A has consistently been one of the lowest in terms of contraceptive use in Enugu state. The Igbo Eze North L.G.A, predominantly rural, recorded below a regional average of 24.9 percent (Enugu stateal Health Report 2007) even though the trend from 2004 shows an increase as indicated in the graph below.
1.3 Rationale of the Study
Unplanned and unintended pregnancies account to a large extent the poor state of health of women and children in most developing nations. The choice of women to control their own health and that of their children is challenged by Social and environmental factors that mitigate their ability to decide independently and freely on their reproductive and sexual choices. There are still unanswered questions based on local settings that have not been revealed and still worsens the situation of these vulnerable groups with regard to decision and choices to make in controlling child birth.
This study was conducted to provide local and contextual expressions by deprived women that could be incorporated locally into the design, administration and implementation of contraceptive programs in Igbo Eze North L.G.As in Nigeria and other rural factors and knowledge about family planning. These factors have intertwined and interrelated to the use of contraceptive.
1.5 Research Questions
- How does the background of women in the Igbo Eze North L.G.A influence their knowledge on contraceptive use and choice?
- To what extent does the socio-economic characteristics of women influence their decisions on contraceptive use in the Igbo Eze North L.G.A?
- What factors account for the low patronage of family planning methods in the Igbo Eze North L.G.A?
- What effect does staff attitude have on access to family planning services by women, in public service point in the Igbo Eze North L.G.A?
1.6 0 Study Objective
1.6.1 General Objective
To assess the extent to which prospective users perceived and were influenced by local factors in using contraceptives and also to examine the contextual factors that had facilitated the consistently low contraceptive coverage in the Aji In Igbo Eze North L.G.A.
1.6.2 Specific Objectives
- To determine the knowledge levels of respondents on contraceptive uses and choices in relation to their social backgrounds
- To assess the extent to which the socio-economic characteristics of the women in Aji In Igbo Eze North L.G.A influence their decisions on the use of family planning methods
- To identify the factors that account for the low patronage of contraceptive methods in the Igbo Eze North L.G.A and assess the correlates among the women in the Igbo Eze North L.G.A
- To examine the extent to which staff attitude at public service centres affects women’s decision in accessing family planning.
- To make recommendations to major stakeholders and also suggest areas of further research.
1.7 The Scope of the Study
The study covered Aji In Igbo Eze North L.G.A in Nigeria which is one of the has consistently been one of the lowest in terms of contraceptive use in Enugu state.
1.8 Operational Definitions of Terms
Practice/methods of preventing pregnancy.
Device or Drugs used to prevent unwanted pregnancy.
A thin rubber tube closed at one end which is worn on male penis or put inside the vagina during intercourse.
Is the expulsion of product of conception before the age of viability which varies from country to country.
1.9 Limitation of the Study
This study was limited to the women in Igbo Eze North L.G.A which the result may not reflect same for all rural communities. The stdy was also limited by the funds and time as the researcher is a final year student with other academic workload.
Conclusions and Recommendations
Knowledge on contraceptives and its relationship with background of respondents
The level of knowledge of contraceptive among the women in the Igbo Eze North L.G.A cuts across all ages, marital status and occupational backgrounds. Ninety-six percent (96%) of the respondents had heard about FP services whilst 4% indicated that they had never heard about the services. This means that most of the people have heard of the FP. But the knowledge does not commensurate with the use of contraceptives.
Socio-economic influences on the use of FP methods
Out of the 330 respondents interviewed, 316 had heard about FP methods, out of which 29% indicated that they had ever used FP, and 71% had never used FP. This means that though most of the respondents have heard about FP method but the level of usage was low. The situation in Africa is as low as 25 percent, the lowest among developing regions in the world (RAND, 1998; UNFPA, 2001). In West Africa, about 36 percent of women are using contraceptives and this rate varies from a low percentage of 22 percent in Mali, 26 percent in Togo, 32 percent in Burkina Faso, and 33 percent in Nigeria (Dona et al. 2008, UNDP, 2008). Also it was found that decision to use FP is largely influenced by closed relatives.
Factors that inhibit patronage of FP services
Fifty three percent (53.6%) of respondents spent less than 30 minutes to access the nearest health facility whereas 5.5% indicated that over an hour is spent. The reasons accounting for the non-use of FP methods included fear of infertility effect, 38.8%; fear of side effects, 22.8%; wanting a child, 19.6% and that it can be harmful, 8.5%.
Clients perceived satisfaction of health staff services on FP method
Out of the 92 clients who had ever used FP methods, 51% indicated that health staffs were very friendly, 26% said they were friendly and 23% not friendly as graphically presented in figure 4. 9 . Generally staff attitudes towards clients were found to be friendly.
- There is the need for intensification of public education at the community level with major emphasis on the use of FP. Effort must be made to explain to the people the benefits as well as possible side effects of the method one may wish to use. This will enable the people to make an informed decision in relations to the use of FP. This is necessary because the present situation shows that most people have heard of FP methods but they are not using them.
- FP should form part of the curriculum of social studies at the basic level. This would make it possible for the children to be introduced to FP at the early stages in their lives.
- FP centres should be established in the communities and be manned by trained personnel to address geographical accessibility to contraceptive use..
- There is the need for inter-sectoral collaboration to empower women so that to a large extent they can take control over their lives in terms of the use of the FP methods. This is necessary because it appears that their overdependence on the male counterparts and closed relative economically has over the years limited them from using family planning methods.
- Study into the socio-cultural effects on FP usage is necessary to unearth the specific socio-cultural factors that are militating against the use of family planning.
- The DHMT can make adequate use of the religious bodies especially the Christians to teach women and their husbands about the need to use contraceptives.
- I also recommend a further research in the area of traditional and modern method of family planning .This is because the local people could be more comfortable and confident in the local methods such as the use of local herbs than foreign ones. This is because most research findings suggest that increasing coverage for family planning services does not necessarily result in usage and that a missing ingredient is required to achieve that, yet it is not known.
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