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Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Kirinyaga women lead, as more women and girls use contraceptives

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More women and girls in Kenya are now using modern contraception to prevent pregnancy, a new report shows.

The report says that at least six million women and girls use the contraceptives.

This is two million more, compared to about four million who were on contraceptives in 2012.

The report further shows that in the last one year, six million women and girls prevented at least 2.2 million unintended pregnancies and averted 503,000 unsafe abortions.

Kenyan women are among the top contraceptive users in Africa.

According to the latest report, at least 80 per cent of women in Kirinyaga County are on contraception.

In addition, the report shows that 57.8 per cent of married women in Kenya are on modern family planning methods; however, the prevalence rate has dropped to 42.5 per cent.

Kenya was among the first countries to commit to the FP2020 partnership when it launched in 2012. The country then committed to put at least 58 per cent of all married women on modern contraception.

The current 57.8 per cent prevalence is a slight drop from the 59 per cent rate in 2018, a drop which has been attributed to, among other things, the COVID-19 restrictions introduced last year by the Health Ministry.

The government currently provides free contraceptives in all public health facilities.

FP2020 Executive Director Beth Schlachter, praised Kenya for its efforts in upscaling the use of contraceptives.

“The FP2020 partnership has bent the curve of progress sharply upward and responded with the strength to Covid-19.  As a result of coordinated partnership over the past eight years, millions of women and girls can now plan their own futures through access to life-changing, and lifesaving, contraceptives,” she said.

However, access is uneven across the country and the report shows 18.6 per cent of women want to use contraceptives but have no access to them.

“With every day that passes, millions are denied the right to choose their own future. As we look ahead to 2030, we must continue to push for progress, build on what works well, and ensure we leave no woman or girl behind, “she said.

In Kenya, injectables remain the most favored contraception method, by 47.9 per cent of all women, followed by implants at 18.2 per cent, pills 14.1 per cent and IUD 5.9 per cent, female sterilization 5.6 per cent and Lactational Amenorrhea Method (breastfeeding method)  at 0.3 per cent.

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