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Assessment of the awareness and usages of family planning methods in the Lebanese community

Abstract

Background Worldwide, one in three women has unmet family planning (FP) needs because of difficulties in accessing or using contraceptives. In Lebanon, information from the scientific literature on the national prevalence of contraceptive use appears scarce.

Objective In view of this, we measured the current Lebanese national prevalence of FP methods’ uptake among women and men of reproductive age, and we assessed barriers for potential unmet need.

Methods We conducted a cross-sectional survey on a nationally representative sample of 825 married women (aged 15–49 years) and men of reproductive age (aged 18+ years). We used the validated Demographic & Health Survey (DHS) data collection tool and analysed data with SPSS Version 22.0 with p values <0.05 considered statistically significant.

Results We found that the current prevalence of contraceptive use is 55.6%, the unmet need is 11.4%, the total demand for FP is 67% and the percentage of satisfied demand for FP is 83%. Despite favourable knowledge of and access to FP methods as well as positive attitudes towards FP; there is a clear stagnation in the rate of contraception use over the past four decades. The identified major factors hindering the use of FP methods in Lebanon appear to be religion, age and lower educational levels.

Conclusion We suggest the implementation of effective interventions at the national level to promote and encourage the uptake of modern FP methods among couples. The latter will further promote maternal and child health, as well as empower women to fulfil their equal function in society.

  • contraception
  • predictors
  • barriers
  • prevalence of use
  • Lebanon
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