Determinants of condom use among antenatal clinic attendees in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania
AbstractObjective: To determine the demographic, socio-economic and psycho-social factors associated with condom use amongst antenatal
clinic attendees in Dar es Salaam.
Methods: A cross sectional study design was employed in four antenatal clinics in Dar es Salaam. Pregnant women were interviewed
between April 1995 and July 1997 to find out if they have ever used a condom and if so whether they had used them consistently for all
coital acts in the previous year.
Results: Of 1,585 women interviewed, 41% had their first sexual experience before age of 18 years and 82% had a history of having
more than two sexual partners during their lifetime. Sixty two percent of women had never used a condom. Although 40% had used a
condom in the previous year only 12% used them consistently. Ever use of a condom increased significantly with the number of years
of education of the respondent and her partner also with the respondent’s financial independence. Women with >9 years of education
were twice as likely as women with < 5 years of education to be condom users (prevalence ratio (PR) = 2.1, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.6 - 2.7). Professional women were almost twice as likely as housewives to have ever used a condom (PR = 1.8, 95% CI = 1.3 -2.3). Women who reported that they have had more than four sexual partners during their lifetime were associated with nearly a four-fold higher lifetime rate of having ever used a condom, compared with a single lifetime partnership (PR = 3.9, 95% CI = 2.8-5.4).
Conclusion: The reported prevalence of ever use of a condom amongst antenatal clinic attendees is low and inconsistent especially among HIV positive women. Deliberate effort should be used to ensure condom access, availability and correct and consistent use of condoms by women in all sexual acts.