According to the latest Pakistan Demographic and Health Survey, 20 percent of married women of reproductive age have unmet need for contraception. Moreover, the country’s contraceptive prevalence rate (CPR), for modern and traditional methods combined, is only 35 percent—one of the lowest CPRs in the region. In addition to the problem of nonuse, the country is finding it difficult to keep current contraceptive users onboard: compared to other developing countries, Pakistan has the highest rate of discontinuation of contraceptive use. Thus, while there has been an overall increase in the use of contraceptives—modern and traditional—there is a large difference between the ever use of any method and current use. This policy brief highlights the main obstacles in family planning (FP) adoption and continuation. The focus is on probing beyond traditional explanations with a holistic view to identify gaps in demand for FP care as well as supply. The low use of contraceptives as well as the alarmingly high rate of discontinuation are explored, and policy recommendations are set forth.
"Low use and high discontinuation of modern contraceptives in Pakistan: Reasons and policy recommendations," Policy brief. Islamabad: Population Council, 2015.