Document Type



Centre of Excellence in Women and Child Health


Background; Improving access to family planning (FP) is associated with positive health benefits that includes averting nearly a third of all maternal deaths and 10% of childhood deaths. Kenya has made great strides in improving access to family planning services. However, amid this considerable progress, regional variation has been noted which begs the need for a clearer understanding of the the patterns and determinants that drive these inconsistencies.

Methods; We conducted a cross-sectional study that involved 663 Muslim women of reproductive age (15–49 years) from Wajir and Lamu counties in Kenya between March and October 2018.The objective of this study was to understand patterns and determinants of contraceptive use in two predominantly Muslim settings of Lamu and Wajir counties that have varying contraceptive uptake. Eligible women were interviewed using a semi-structured questionnaire containing socio-demographic information and history of family planning use. Simple and multiple logistic regression were used to identify determinants of family planning use. The results were presented as Crude Odds Ratio (COR) and Adjusted Odds Ratio (AOR) ratios at 95% confidence interval. A p-value of 0.05 was considered statistically significant.

Results; Of the 663 Muslim women of reproductive age consenting to participate in the study, 51.5%, n = 342 and 48.5%, n = 321 were from Lamu and Wajir County, respectively. The prevalence of women currently using contraceptive was 18.6% (n = 123). In Lamu, the prevalence was 32.8%, while in Wajir, it was 3.4%. The determinants of current contraceptive use in Lamu include; marital status, age at marriage, employment status, discussion with a partner on FP, acceptability of FP in culture, and willingness to obtain information on FP. While in Wajir, determinants of current contraceptive use were education, and the belief that family planning is allowed in Islam.

Coclusions; Our study found moderately high use of contraceptives among Muslim women of reproductive age in Lamu county and very low contraceptive use among women in Wajir. Given the role of men in decision making, it is critical to design male involvement strategy particularly in Wajir where the male influence is very prominent. It is critical for the government to invest in women and girls’ education to enhance their ability to make informed decisions; particularly in Wajir where FP uptake is low with low education attainment. Further, our findings highlight the need for culturally appropriate messages and involvement of religious leaders to demystify the myths and misconception around family planning and Islam particularly in Wajir.

Publication (Name of Journal)

BMC Women's Health


Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.