Correlates of contraceptive use among couples in slums of Chandigarh, India

Dinesh Kumar, Navpreet Singh, Munesh K. Sharma, Naveen K. Goel, Anupama Dhiman


Background: Population explosion in developing countries is the major problem which neutralizes all the gains and developments achieved in the country. In India, in spite of availability of many contraceptive techniques, the couple protection rate continues to be inadequate. The objective of the study was to compare the fertility behavior of men and women in terms of awareness, preferred and intended use of contraceptives.

Methods: Community-based longitudinal study was conducted among 667 couples in four randomly selected slum areas of Chandigarh using a two-stage systematic sample design. Data was collected using a predesigned and pretested semi-structured interview schedule conducting house-to-house survey. Impact of interventions in the form of health education was assessed at the end of follow-up.

Results: There were 193 (28.9%) female respondents married before attaining 18 years of age. Medium ages at marriage for women were found to be 18 years. Majority, 91 (13.6%) women delivered first baby prior to 18 years of age. Age wise contraceptive prevalence rate was found to be maximum (66.2%) among women aged 36-49 years. Contraceptive use was more common in case of nuclear families (60.4%) and in case of improvident maternity (65.3%). Overall awareness of contraceptives among couples was found to be among 545 (81.7%) couples whereas, only 382 (57.3) were using contraceptives currently.

Conclusions: Migratory couples, having at least one female child, and with history of still births were more likely to use contraceptives. Interventions in the form of health education have some positive role in increasing contraceptive awareness and current as well as intended uses of contraception.


Contraceptive use, Couples, Improvident maternity, India

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