Background: India is the second most populous country in the world. Of the total slum dwellers worldwide, 17% of them are present in India. Although the total fertility rate (TFR) for the country has decreased to 2.5 in the period from 2009 to 2010, there are still miles to go to reach the replacement level of 2.1.
Objective: To assess the utilization pattern of family planning services by eligible couples and to identify the factors affecting it.
Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out from July 2012 to June 2013 with a sample of 405 women in the reproductive age group; they were selected using systematic random sampling. Data entry and statistical analysis were performed using the SPSS, version17.0.
Result: About 55.6% couples were presently practicing contraceptive methods. About 94.3% couples were using temporary method for contraception. The most common method used was condoms. Female sterilization was the only permanent method accepted by couples in our study. Only 23.6% couples were utilizing the government facility for the procurement of the contraceptives. Higher age, higher levels of education, and occupation of the couples led to the increased utilization of contraceptive practices in a significant manner. Better standard of living, increasing birth order, and having a nuclear family was also found to be significantly associated with contraceptive practices.
Conclusion: Sociodemographic factors play an important role in the utilization of family planning services in slum areas. The Muslim community in slums preferred temporary methods of contraception over permanent ones with the private sector being the major service provider.
Contraception, family planning, Muslim, slum