Family planning practices and opinions on population growth of family planning healthcare providers in Turkey

Adem Bahadir, Tarık E Yilmaz, İskender Bülbül, Tuğba Yilmaz, İsmail Kasim, İrfan Şencan, Adem Özkara

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate the opinions of health professionals (HPs) who provide family planning counselling (FPC) within the scope of primary health care services since they are perceived as role models by the society. The number of HPs providing family planning counselling in primary health services in Turkey was 43,000 and 40,000 of these individuals were invited to participate in this observational, cross-sectional study via e-mail and social media. There were 740 responders and all were included in the study. Physicians providing FPC within the scope of primary health care services consisted of 45.1% of the responders and the remaining were nurses. Among all HPs, 59.7% had insufficient awareness regarding Turkey’s population growth. Most of the HPs (52.4%) believed that the ideal number of children was 2 or less. The abortion rate was 9.1% in all pregnancies of HPs. The rate of caesarean section was 56% in all live births. According to responses, 75.6% of all pregnancies experienced by HPs were planned. According to 42.1% of the HPs, abortion must be performed if there is a life-threatening situation for the mother or if the fetus has some abnormalities. The most common method of birth control used by married HPs between the ages of 18 and 49 was male condoms (39.9%), while the pull-out method ranked first in the general population (25.5%). It was found that HPs, who had different opinions and practices about family planning than the general population, had insufficient awareness regarding population growth. Increased awareness of demography and FPC among HPs will likely contribute to the quality of service and the general wellbeing of the population. (Afr J Reprod Health 2021; 25[2]: 65-75).

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