Condom availability for young people (15-24)

 

The percent of randomly selected sites and venues typically accessed by young men and women aged 15-24 years which have condoms in stock at the time of the survey.

Sites and venues that are typically accessed by young people must be operationally defined through key informant interviews or responses on a youth survey to questions on where young people get condoms or where they prefer to get them. These venues should primarily include retail outlets, youth centers, health clinics, school clinics, and pharmacies. Additional sites could be as diverse as bus stops, barbers’ shops, hair salons, night clubs, bars, food shops, kiosks, markets, petrol stations, and other community-based distributors.

This indicator is calculated as:

(Number of retail outlets and service delivery points that are typically accessed by young people aged 15-24 years that have condoms in stock at the time of the survey / Number of retail outlets and service delivery points typically accessed by young people) x 100


 

Inventories, responses to surveys that demonstrate condom availability. The sampling frame should be stratified in order to ensure geographical, demographic, and socioeconomic  diversity (e.g. rural/urban). It is better to limit the type of venue that could or should provide condoms to young people, and to focus on a defined set that must consistently provide them. Accordingly, this indicator should focus mainly on the priority venues and include additional ones as resources permit.

The data can be disaggregated by condom type (male/female), geographical location (e.g. region, state, district, county or ward), outlet type and if the condoms were available behind the counter or available where people did not need to ask for them.  Data disaggregated by outlet type provide invaluable information for program managers and for persons seeking to improve the marketing of condoms.


 

Condom inventories and purchase records for sites and venues, or the MEASURE Evaluation/WHO/ PSI compiled condom availability and quality protocol retail survey.


 

This indicator helps measure the supply and accessibility of condoms for young people by monitoring the distribution of condoms at venues where youth will typically access them. It highlights programs and efforts to increase the distribution of condoms so they are available at the types of locations young people prefer. Because of the stigma around adolescent sexual activity many young people do not feel comfortable purchasing condoms in places where they know people or fear judgment.

While condom availability is considered important component of a program aimed at increasing access and usage there is no clear link to between condom availability alone and their subsequent usage, particularly by young people (WHO, 2004). Thus, combining this indicator with other indicators such as Percent of sexually active, unmarried adolescents who consistently use condoms  can give a powerful picture of the adequacy of condom provision.


 

This indicator does not measure cost or if condoms are available at the right time. However, barriers to accessibility other than simple absence of condoms are often subjective and therefore difficult to measure (WHO, 2004).

It may be difficult and costly to obtain a full list of all possible sites where young people obtain condoms. For this reason, criteria should be developed for the types of venues to be included, focusing on venues that, in the particular national context, must consistently provide condoms for young people (WHO, 2004).

Where condom promotion activities center around mar­keting condoms at subsidized prices to people likely engaging in risky sex (social marketing), sales of par­ticular brands of condoms can also provide a useful in­dicator of program success. Organizations responsible for the social marketing of condoms typically keep records of condoms distributed down to the retail level. Although these data tell only part of the story of condom availability, they provide a very low-cost source of information.


policy, access, sexually transmitted infection (STI), HIV/AIDS, adolescent

 

WHO, 2004. National AIDS programmes : a guide to indicators for monitoring and evaluating national HIV/AIDS prevention programmes for young people.

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