Central Data Catalog

Citation Information

Type Working Paper - Demographic transformations and inequalities in Latin America
Title Fertility and contraception in Latin America: historical trends, recent patterns
Author(s)
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2009
Page numbers 161
Abstract
Several Latin American countries are close to or have reached below replacement fertility levels, if not for the countries’ average, at least for large socioeconomic or regional groups within the countries. Fertility rates have declined from over six children per woman to around two children in the last 40 years. The proximate determinants that allowed for this dynamic were essentially the high prevalence of contraception. Hence, we could easily conclude that people living in this continent have no problems in controlling their fertility, that is, they can keep it down and by using contraceptive methods. Nonetheless, the history and the trends on contraceptive use are not the same around the continent and a deeper look on data shows the enormous problems that still persist after all these years. The objective of this paper is to present a systematization of data on contraceptive use in the last 20 years in selected countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. The overall patterns analyzed in these countries show that the range on used methods is rather very small, that the responsibility are still mostly over women’s shoulder, the inequalities according to education and place of residence are still large, and the unwanted and mistimed fertility is very high, pointing to very inconsistent use of contraception and high prevalence of induced abortions. Additionally, we point out to changes noticed in some recent surveys, showing an increase of contraceptive prevalence among younger people and a timid increase in the male participation on contraception in some countries. Finally, we make the case that despite of different policies and implementation of family planning programs there is large similarity on reproductive behavior in Latin American and Caribbean countries regarding to the timing of childbearing

Related studies

»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»