EngenderHealth | 2013
Posted on

Long-acting and permanent methods of contraception (LA/PMs) are safe and cost-effective for women who desire to delay or limit births, yet they are largely underutilized in Nigeria. These methods—the intrauterine device (IUD), the hormonal implant, female sterilization, and vasectomy—contribute only about 10% of all modern contraceptive use (NPC & ICF Macro, 2009).
To satisfy Millennium Development Goal (MDG) No. 5, the government of Nigeria is committed to expanding access to family planning and to reducing unmet need by 10% per year over the next few years; reaching this target will require a large increase in contraceptive use. To accomplish this, more needs to be known about why so few Nigerian couples practice contraception, despite the high levels of unmet need, and in particular why use of LA/PMs there is so low. In 2011 and 2012, The RESPOND Project conducted qualitative research in Cambodia, Malawi, and Nigeria to gain insights into the factors that may constrain the use of LA/PMs. These countries were chosen because they are U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) priority countries and represent not only geographic diversity, but also diversity in contraceptive prevalence and method mix. This brief reports the results of the research in Nigeria and reviews some recommendations that the Nigerian government and nongovernmental organizations working there should consider to meet the challenges inherent in attaining MDG No. 5 and helping Nigerian couples achieve their family size intentions.