Uptake of contraceptive services among undergraduate students of a public university in Kenya-A case of Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology
Contraceptives offer protection against unwanted pregnancy and some sexually transmitted infections including HIV. This study was set to determine the level and factors affecting uptake of contraceptive services among undergraduate students at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT). The overall level of contraceptives use was low 34.2% (149).Contraceptive service provider attitude (P=0.001), affordability/accessibility/safety (P=0.001) and reason for use (P=0.001) were significantly associated with contraceptive uptake. It was concluded that contraceptive user rate among students was low and they obtain contraceptives over the counter. Therefore more enhanced contraceptive information is required for both students and care providers to improve contraceptive dissemination and use.
Methods: A cross-sectional study design was used which adopted both quantitative (through self-administered questionnaires) and qualitative (through KIs) approaches. A sample size of 436 was used for the quantitative and 3 staffs from the health center for the qualitative data. The randomly selected students were traced through their Faculties/Departments/Courses using an internal memo.
Results: The overall level of contraceptive use was low (34.2%) despite high levels of contraceptive awareness (96.1%). Student’s religion, residence, parity, previous sexual experiences, previous contraceptive use, contraceptive sources, availability, costs and students attitude towards contraceptives were associated with contraceptive uptake.
Conclusions: The uptake of contraceptive remains relatively low despite the high level of awareness. Contraceptive costs, availability, sources, provider’s attitude and students’ contraceptive attitude and practices play a great role in contraceptive uptake.
Recommendations: More enhanced contraceptive information is required for both students and care providers to improve contraceptive dissemination and use.
Students’ clinics should be youth friendly to allow students obtain contraceptives from there and not from over the counter
Strategies to educate the university students on benefits of use of contraceptives should be developed by university management and ministry of health to improve acceptability and utilisation of services.