Women's empowerment and contraceptive use: a community-based survey in peri-urban Kumasi, Ghana
Gates Open Research
Many reasons have been used to explain why contraceptive uptake in Ghana has not been as impressive as desired. One area that has not received enough attention is that of women's empowerment. This study sought a better understanding of how women's empowerment influences contraceptive uptake. Methods: A structured questionnaire was used to interview 761 currently married or cohabiting women aged 15-49 years who were residents of Asawasi and Oforikrom for at least two years and consented to be
... consented to be part of the study. Bivariate and multivariate analyses were used to link the exposure variables: the three measures of empowerment and other variables such as age, marital status, religion, education, ethnicity, income and number of living children with the outcome variable (current or future contraceptive use). Excel was used for data entry and STATA for analyses. Results: In total, 29% of respondents were empowered in all the three categories used to measure empowerment in this study; 34% were empowered in two of the three categories, 29% were empowered in only one category while 9% of the women were not empowered in any of the categories. In multivariate logistic regression analysis, the odds of empowered women using contraceptives was significantly higher than the odds of women who were not empowered. Conclusions: Provision of economic interventions to empower and uplift conditions of women is needed to bring change in the economic status of their families and remove their dependence upon family members. This would make women in peri-urban Kumasi economically independent in making contraceptive choices and decisions, which would help in the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals: One (to end poverty in all its forms everywhere) and Five (to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls).