Contraceptive Discontinuation Study Report Available; Findings Disseminated in Honduras
MEASURE Evaluation and Programs for the Development of Women and Infants (PRODIM), based in Honduras, implemented a longitudinal study on contraceptive discontinuation in four urban areas of Honduras; Tegucigalpa, San Pedro Sula, Santa Rosa de Copan, and Gracias. The study, conducted from 2006-2007, aimed to assess how service environment, individual characteristics, and experience or fear of side-effects are related to contraceptive discontinuation.
The study report highlights issues pertinent to the provision of family planning services in urban Honduras. Particularly significant is the amount of movement within the study population – one-third of the baseline population had a change of residence during the one-year study period, suggesting that follow-up, whether for research or programmatic purposes, is difficult and will require special efforts. Most service quality indicators were not shown to be related to discontinuation; however, women who felt that all their questions had been answered at the clinic appointment at baseline were more likely to continue using their baseline method without interruption or to switch methods during the study, than were women who didn’t know or felt their questions weren’t answered.
At a dissemination event that took place in Honduras in June 2008, a summary statement entitled "Las usuarias de los métodos femininos reversibles: Estudio de seguimiento en cuatro areas urbanas de Honduras" (Users of female reversible methods: Follow-up study in four urban areas of Honduras) was distributed to stakeholders from the Ministry of Health clinics involved in the study, USAID/Honduras, the Honduran Association of Family Planning (ASHONPLAFA), and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). The statement outlined findings related to reasons for discontinuation, incidence of pregnancy, experience of side effects, fertility motivations, the decision-making environment, and service quality. Also included in the statement were recommendations based on the study findings, such as:
- Discontinuation is inevitable and programs need to be prepared for it
- Women should be encouraged to return to the provider if they are unhappy with their method
- Program providers need to look for new ways to inform, educate and facilitate the participation of the family members and friends that influence women's family planning decisions