Northern Kenya counties registered improved but least usage of family planning in a recent survey but Central Kenya counties leapt even higher except for Kirinyaga which regressed.
A comparison of the 2014 Kenya Demographic and Health Survey (KDHS) and the 2022 one released on Tuesday shows all the Garissa, Wajir and Mandera have added the percentage of the women who are using any form of birth control.
Garissa county recorded the largest increase, from 5.5 per cent in 2014 to 12.7 per cent in 2022 followed by Wajir which moved from 2.3 to 3.0. Mandera recorded the lowest improvement, but also the lowest score of birth control in the country at paltry 2.1 up from 1.9 percent in 2014.
The three counties however registered zero condom usage, with injectable methods more preferred in Garissa and Mandera. In 2014 only Mandera recorded zero condom usage of the three, alongside Isiolo, Kitui and West Pokot.
In contrast to the blossoming populations in the north, Centrals Nyandarua, Nyeri, Murang’a and Kiambu increased their usage of contraceptives, leading to less and less births. Nyeri raised the bar higher than all while Kirinyaga slowed the breaks on birth control the most.
Of the 254 women interviewed in Nyeri, 81 percent said they were in a form of contraceptive use or another, the second highest score in the country. Majority of them,18.8 percent, preferred Intra Uterine Device (IUD), the highest score in the country.
Nyandarua’s women also pulled up their socks from 65.6 percent to 71.4 percent, majority of them preferring injectable means. Murang’a moved up from 68.9 to 72.7 percent while Kiambu moved from 74 to 77.4 percent.
From the data gathered, Embu county is undoubtedly the pills paradise of Kenya with the contraceptive scoring 22.9 percent, the highest in the country after Murang’a 20 percent.
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The pill was also the area women’s most preferred contraceptive and the county topped the nation at 81.7 percent in overall birth control scores.
On the pill, Embu grabbed the crown from Kirinyaga which led in 2014 survey at 26.0 percent but has since dropped to 19. In 2014, Embu’s women were popping pills at 15 percent.
In the survey, Migori men are the undisputed kings of rubber followed closely by their Homa Bay counterparts. Condom use recorded the highest score in Migori at 6.6 while Homa Bay had 4.1.
In 2014, Siaya men were unassailable in condom usage in the country at 5.2 percent. They have since dropped the guard to 3.6.
Vihiga county, on the other hand, lead the country in usage of implants at 34.6 percent, followed by Kericho at 29.8. Nyamira and Busia lead in female sterilization taking over from Makueni in 2014 while Lamu recorded the few instances of male sterilization taking the crown off Nakuru in 2014.
All counties in Kenya recorded negligible use of female condoms except for Migori and Elgeyo Marakwet which appear to have excelled a bit. Elgeyo Marakwet also led the country in the highest number of women using traditional methods of birth control at 15 percent.
Of the traditional methods, Turkana and Elgeyo Marakwet led the country in rhythm method of birth control while Narok led the charge on withdrawal method, followed closely by same Elgeyo Marakwet. Withdrawal scored zero in Busia, West Pokot, Mandera, Wajir and Kwale.
In 2014, Tana River recorded the highest withdrawal score, followed closely by Narok and Kwale. In the same year, Makueni topped rhythm method usage at a whopping 13 percent followed by Elgeyo Marakwet with 10.
In the current survey, Rhythm proved an alien concept in Kwale, Marsabit and Bomet.