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Afr J Reprod Health. 2013 Sep;17(3):79-90.

Partner communication, discordant fertility goals, and contraceptive use in urban Kenya.

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Department of Epidemiology, Gillings School of Global Public Health, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA.


This study assesses the degree of partner communication and perceived partner concordance and their association with contraceptive use among 2,891 women and 1,362 men in urban Kenya. Twenty-three percent of men and 30% of women report never discussing FP with their partner. Approximately 70% of participants perceive their partner to have concordant fertility desires. Multivariate analyses revealed that both male (AOR = 7.7 [95% CI = 5.5-10.7]) and female (AOR = 2.8 [95% CI = 2.3-3.3]) participants were more likely to use contraception if they report discussing FP with their partner. Participants who perceive that their partner wants fewer children also were more likely to use contraception (AOR, females = 1.8 [95% CI = 1.2-2.8]), (AOR, males = 1.9 [95% CI = 1.2-3.1]). Discussion of FP is a key determinant of contraceptive use; in couples with discordant fertility goals, pro-natalist males do not always dictate contraceptive behavior in urban Kenya.

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