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Adolescent demand for contraception and family planning services in low- and middle-income countries: A systematic review

Deitch, Julianne; Stark, Lindsay B.

An estimated 23 million adolescent girls age 15–19 in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) have an unmet need for contraception. Despite the recognised importance of expanding access to appropriate methods of contraceptives for adolescents in LMICs, the evidence base on their total demand for contraception is limited, and there is no consensus on how to measure this important phenomenon. The aim of this study was to review the published literature in order to better understand the level of adolescent demand for contraception in LMICs and to explore what demand-related indicators are being measured. A total of 1375 articles were identified and 18 met the inclusion criteria. Included studies reported findings from 29 LMICs, revealing high adolescent demand for contraception. The demand for contraception among adolescents and young women ranged from 22% among married adolescents in Azerbaijan to 98% in Peru. However, measures of this phenomenon were limited, with most studies only reporting current contraceptive use or unmet need. Most studies relied on cross-sectional data, and young, unmarried, and male adolescents were largely excluded. We make several recommendations for alternative approaches for a more comprehensive understanding of adolescent demand for contraception in LMICs.

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Also Published In

Title
Global Public Health
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1080/17441692.2019.1583264

More About This Work

Academic Units
Population and Family Health
Published Here
May 21, 2019
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