Investing in the future: The case for long-acting and permanent contraception in sub-Saharan Africa

Wuleta Betamariam, EngenderHealth
John M. Pile, EngenderHealth
Isaiah Ndong, EngenderHealth
Roy Jacobstein, EngenderHealth

In Sub-Saharan Africa, 44.5 million women—2 in 5 married women of reproductive age—want to space births or limit their number of births. However, fewer than half (21 million) currently use any contraceptive method, and only one in seven uses a modern method. There are compelling reasons to invest in long-acting and permanent contraceptive methods (LAPMs)—IUDs, implants, and male and female sterilization—in Sub-Saharan Africa. LAPMs can address a full range of women’s and couples’ needs. Only 1.8 million women currently use these methods, yet evidence suggests that if and when potential clients have correct information on the methods and services are made widely available, LAPMs will be adopted. LAPMs are needed, wanted, and crucial. This paper 1) addresses the case for investing in LAPMs in Africa, 2) reviews current trends, 3) model future scenarios, and 4) outlines strategies for increasing access and utilization of LAPM services

Presented in Session 74: The future of family planning programmes in Africa