By Devota Mwachang’a
The government of Tanzania has been urged to invest in family planning by increasing access to contraceptives information, services and supplies so as to accelerate socioeconomic development.
Family planning (FP) is a cost-effective intervention to reduce poverty and improve economic development
85% of marriage adolescents and 60% unmarried adolescents do not practice family planning. The situation leads to the rapid population growth.
Pathfinder International’s senior country representative in Tanzania Joseph Komwihangiro said that access to contraceptives is still the major problem among women despite awareness of the family planning (FP).
“Family planning is a service like other essential services which needs supply and demand, but the barrier of restricted of contraceptives to the users, the demand is too high,” he said.
According to him, despite the availability of many government health facilities there is no enough specialist of family planning service providers and other methods like those of intrauterine device (IUD).
On his part Tanzania Men as Equal Partners (TMEP) in Development’s Director Cuthbert Maendaenda said that efforts should be made to target males in family planning outreach and service provision.
“Awareness of FP is higher compared to the knowledge of contraceptives, men have been discouraging their partners to use the contraceptives as afraid of the side effects which might occur after and during the use of them,” he said.
According to him, The FP education is important, it should be used as a key component of a well-resourced national strategy.
Prof. Honest Ngowi (economist) from Mzumbe University Dar es Salaam Campus said that there is wider relation between populations and economy.
National sales and marketing manager of AAR Healthcare, Tabia Masoud said that AAR intended to help Tanzania to meet its national family planning targets, through provision of FP services which mean to control the population demographic dividend.
Forty four percent of 19 years old surveyed in 2010 were either mothers or pregnant with their first child and many others resort to unsafe abortion There is large variation in contraceptive access geographically and across population sub-groups and nationwide, one in four currently married women have an unmet need for family planning, according to the Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS).