School of Nursing and Midwifery, Pakistan
Background: Worldwide, the Contraceptive Prevalence Rate (CPR) increased from 54.8% to 63.3%. However, Pakistan’s current CPR is estimated to be 35%. Men can play an important role in increasing CPR by providing support to their partners, yet their role has been overlooked in targeted reproductive health strategies. The aim of this study was to assess the awareness and practices of married men regarding Family Planning (FP).
Material and Method: This cross-sectional study was conducted among 419 married men, residing in an urban squatter settlement of Karachi. Participants were selected through non-probability convenience sampling and a structured questionnaire was used to collect data. Data were analyzed using SPSS 23.
Results: The mean age of the male respondents was 29.74±4.66 years. Almost 95% of participants were aware of the purpose of ‘Family Planning’ whereas only 44.6% participants (or their wives) were current users of FP. Condoms were the most frequently used FP method (50.8%). The most common reason for using FP methods was financial hardship (46.5%) whereas religious beliefs were the main reason for not using a FP method (50%). Over 80% of participants believed that the husband should make the decision regarding FP and almost 64% thought the wife should be using the FP method.
Over 40% of men using FP were 31-35 years old. Almost 60% of participants included in the study were Urdu speakers. Men and their wives who had either primary or secondary education were more frequent users of FP (p<0.01). In addition, employees in the private sector had the highest percentage (68.4 %) of FP use (p<0.012), compared with government job employees (8%), labourers (7.5%) and shopkeepers (7.5%).
Conclusion: Strategies should be designed to educate men about the importance of FP and the crucial role that they hold in making decisions about women’s reproductive health.
Khowaja, F, Pervaiz, M, & Khatoon, N. Male Involvement in Family Planning among Squatter Settlement Residents of Karachi. Journal of Asian Midwives. 2019;6(1):26–42.