Contraceptive Use and Unmet Need Among Women in Polygynous Marriages

Wenjuan Wang , The DHS Program/ICF
Sarah Staveteig, U.S. Department of State
Courtney Allen, The DHS Program, ICF

Using DHS data from seven countries with a relatively high prevalence of polygyny, this study assesses contraceptive practices and unmet need among polygynous unions and their differences with monogamous unions. Preliminary findings indicate overall, women in polygynous marriages are less likely to use a contraceptive method than women in monogamous marriages after controlling for covariates. The two groups have a similar method mix, which suggests the primacy of the service environment in influencing choice of method. In general, women in polygynous marriages have a lower level of unmet need, especially unmet need for limiting than monogamous women. A larger proportion of women in polygynous unions have no need for contraception. Results on trends of contraceptive use and unmet need are forthcoming.

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 Presented in Session 1. Fertility, Family Planning, Sexual Behavior, & Reproductive Health 1