Inequalities in Unsatisfied Demand for Modern Contraception Within and Across Low- and Middle-Income Countries

Sarah Staveteig, U.S. Department of State
Tesfayi Gebreselassie
Kathryn Kampa , Tulane University

Broad gains in contraceptive use have been made in low-income countries over the past two decades, but progress has been uneven. Given FP2020 goals to meet demand for modern contraception and the SDGs’ emphasis on equitable progress, there is renewed interest in measuring inequalities in modern contraceptive coverage. Studies of this topic are typically constrained by the fact that standard poverty measures are relative within surveys. This paper develops and uses a measure of absolute poverty for 31 countries with recent DHS surveys and prior surveys on average 10 years older. It appears that inequalities within and across countries are declining, but that within-country inequalities are declining faster than across-country inequalities.

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 Presented in Session 10. Fertility, Family Planning, Sexual Behavior & Reproductive Health 2