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Fam Plann Perspect. 1992 Sep-Oct;24(5):219-23.

Contraceptive use and sterilization among Puerto Rican women.

Author information

1
Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Fordham University, New York.

Abstract

A comparison of contraceptive use in the early to mid-1980s among married Puerto Rican women aged 15-49 in the New York City area reveals that island-born Puerto Rican women living in New York rely on female sterilization to nearly the same extent as do women living in Puerto Rico (45% and 41%, respectively) and that mainland-born Puerto Rican women use sterilization as much as do all women in the United States (19% for both groups). Puerto Rican women in New York use reversible methods to a greater extent than do women in Puerto Rico (22% v. 16%), but to a lesser extent than do all women in the United States (37%). Although mainland-born Puerto Rican women in New York use reversible methods more than do island-born women in New York (42% v. 23%), they tend not to adopt these methods to the same extent as do all U.S. women during the early reproductive years, when education and employment are critical to socioeconomic attainment.

PIP:

Researchers compared data from 1985 on 1998 15-49 year old Puerto Rican women living in the greater New York City area with data from 1982 on 3174 15-49 year old women living in Puerto Rico and with data from 1982 on 7969 15-44 year old women living in the US to examine their contraceptive practices. Women who were born in Puerto Rico and later lived in New York City had almost the same sterilization rate as those women still living in Puerto Rico (44.7% vs. 40.5%). On the other hand, about the same proportion of Puerto Rican women born and raised in New York City used reversible methods (42.1%), especially oral contraceptives (18.5%) and the IUD (11%). Only 18.5% of the US-born Puerto Rican women had undergone female sterilization which basically equalled that for all US women (18.7%). A higher proportion of Puerto Ricans in New York City used reversible methods than did those in Puerto Rico (21.7% vs. 15.7%), but not as high a proportion as all US women (36.8%). US-born Puerto Ricans did not accept reversible methods as early in the reproductive years as did all US women (42.2% vs. 58.4% for 15-24 year olds). Puerto Rican women, regardless of residence or place of birth, reported fewer male sterilizations and less condom use by their partners than all US women (0% male sterilizations for all Puerto Rican women in New York City, 4.6% for those in Puerto Rico vs. 10.8% and 2.8% of partners using condoms for island-born Puerto Ricans, 5.1% for US-born Puerto Ricans, and 4.4% for those in Puerto Rico vs. 9.8%). These findings on partner responsibility for contraception may reflect the cultural definition of women as rearers of children. The researchers hoped that the results of this descriptive study would motivate others to conduct further research to determine socioeconomic correlates of contraceptive practice and cultural and religious variables.

PMID:
1426184
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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