Journal Article

Family planning knowledge, attitudes, and practices of men in Zimbabwe

The purpose of this report is to describe knowledge, attitudes, and practices in family planning among male Zimbabweans. Understanding the role of men in inhibiting or promoting contraceptive adoption could affect the design of family planning promotion programs and program success in Zimbabwe and other African countries. Data from the 1988 Male Fertility Survey, a representive sample of 711 currently married men aged 20 and over, showed that men have a major role in the decision to use family planning methods and in determining the number of children a couple should have. Male knowledge of various family planning methods was high, as was approval and ever-use of family planning. Attitudes toward family planning information, obtaining methods, couple communication, and family size were also investigated. It was concluded that men should be included in information, education, and communication programs, without delay. Program efforts should move beyond emphasis on child spacing to stress family size limitation in order to increase contraceptive prevalence, resulting in a commensurate decline in the level of fertility.