Unmet Need

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THE UNMET NEED FOR FAMILY PLANNING ON FERTILITY LEVELS IN UGANDA: INTRODUCTION:
Background:
The world population grew to 7 billion on 31s t October 2011 of which 97% of the population was for developing countries .The total fertility rate for developed countries ranged from 1.4 and 1.3 or even less.MDCS Birthrates have declined since the baby boom era in 1960 from 3.6 to 2.0. (Carl Haub 2012). Countries that have the lowest fertility rates include Poland, Portugal, Romania 1.3%, Singapore and south Korea 1.2, Latvia and Taiwan 1.1% (PRB 2012).Some theories of low fertility in MDCS have attributed this to the role of wealth and economic development in lowering levels of fertility(Ashraf Ragab 2005).Other factors like women prestige, education, income and other factors have helped developed countries to have low fertility rates. Though fertility rates have been declining for the last three decades, fertility levels have been increasing in some parts of Sub-Saharan Africa. Countries with the highest rates include Niger 7.1, Burundi6.4 Somalia 6.4, Mali 6.3, Angola 6.3, DRC6.3, Zambia 6.3, Uganda 6.2 and Burkina Faso, 6.2per woman. In such countries, only 20% (on the average) of married women use family planning methods. This implies that the use of family planning is declining or not taking place at all (World population 2012).Sub Saharan countries that normally have high rates of fertility are characterized by poor development indicators of low life expectancy at birth, high dependency ratio, and economic vulnerability, infants mortality, low levels of education hence low levels of incomes. In East Africa, Uganda has the highest fertility rates of 6.2 (Uganda Bureau of Statistics 2011). The high population growth rate of 3.2% in Uganda implies that one million people are added unto Uganda’s population every year (UBOS 2012).Uganda’s population is expected explode to 54 million in 2025 and 130 million by 2050 based on the current birthrate. The factors underlying high population growth rate are many but the high total fertility rate of 6.2 per woman stand out, coupled with high unmet need for family planning services. Unfortunately the resource distribution does not match the growing population rate, posing a threat to the quality of life in the country. According to the population reference bureau 2012, Uganda total fertility rate, which is one of the highest in the world after Niger’s 7.1% and the unmet need for family planning is rampant and becoming an obstacle to the economic growth (UDHS 2011).This is mostly highest in the rural areas of northern region at 43% being highest rates compared to 27% in central with 27%. Yet government funding for contraceptives is insufficient to meet the urban demands (Population Reference Bureau 2011). Total Fertility Rate is the average number of children a woman would bear by the end of her child bearing years if she were to pass through years bearing children at the current observed age specific rates (UDHS 2011).Although there has been a decrease of 0.5 of children in the last five years (UDHS 2006), Uganda has the youngest population of 48.7% below 15 years of age, an implication that there’s a high dependency ratio according to the latest world population data. The total fertility rate in central(Kampala)which is 3.3% is almost half of the total fertility rate of the national level at 6.2%.Since Uganda Demographic report of 2006,the Total fertility rate (eastern 7.5%,east central 6.9,and west Nile regions 6.8%) have remained above the national level. Although there’s awareness of at least the use of one method of family planning methods ,3 in 10 married women are using modern methods of family planning. Modern family planning methods findings shows that the percentage of modern methods of family planning usage increased from 14% in 2001 to 26% to 2011 with the main provider being the government. This low percentage usage can be consolidated by the fact that 43% discontinue using...
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