The Barriers to Fertility Regulation and Family Planning in Africa


  • Prof. Josiah Mutihir


Barriers, Fertility Regulation, Family Planning


Background: Family planning is fundamental to social and economic development, as well as optimal reproductive health worldwide. Yet the contraceptive prevalence rate is extremely poor in least developed or developing countries.

Objective: To highlight the main barriers to contraceptive use in countries of Africa and the associated factors. In addition, it also sought to bring to the fore any linkage between low contraceptive prevalence rate and socio-economic development.

Methodology: Publications that x-rayed barriers to fertility regulation and contraceptive use in countries across Africa particularly review articles, institutional and community research from 1983 to 2016 were accessed electronically and manually. Publications with access to the full articles were deplored for the review, while publications that had access to the full articles denied were excluded.

Results: Array of barriers to contraceptive use or fertility regulations were identified and these appear to be on the increase. Religious, cultural and traditional barriers to contraception appear to be the leading factors responsible. Literacy on the other hand seem to promote the use of contraceptive methods through the self-recognition of the rights to access and use the methods of contraception for fertility regulation.

Conclusion: Countries across Africa have very low contraceptive prevalence rates, and a huge array of barriers to family planning and fertility regulations account for this. The lower the contraceptive prevalence rate, the higher the number of existing barriers to family planning methods. Social and economic development, as well as optimal reproductive health cannot be guaranteed without adequately addressing the barriers to Family Planning. In the developed world, most of these barriers have been overcome primarily by better awareness, the promotion of rights issues and the empowerment of potential users, particularly women.


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Author Biography

  • Prof. Josiah Mutihir

    Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, College of Medicine, University of Jos, Nigeria


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Barriers to Fertility Regulation and Family Planning

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The Barriers to Fertility Regulation and Family Planning in Africa




How to Cite

The Barriers to Fertility Regulation and Family Planning in Africa. JRSH [Internet]. 2017 Jun. 1 [cited 2024 May 20];1(1):33-41. Available from: