17. El-Yahya, H. M. Report on an Agency-wide Study on Current Practices of Contraceptive Use among Mothers of Children 0-3 Years of Age Attending UNRWA MCH Clinics. Amman, Jordan: UNRWA, 1997: 29 pp.

UNRWA conducted an Agency-wide cross-sectional study to assess the current contraceptive practices among 8,309 mothers attending MCH clinics in Jordan, the West Bank and Gaza Strip, Lebanon and Syria. The study also aimed to identify future program needs and to establish base line data for monitoring the progress of UNRWA's family planning program. The study instruments included the Child Health Records (CHR) which provides basic data on the mother's and child's health, and a standard questionnaire completed through interviews with the mothers. Results are provided on the general characteristics of mothers, contraceptive use and factors affecting the use of modern contraceptives. Analysis of the data showed that the mean age of mothers in the sample was 27.1 years. The mean marital age was 19.2 years. Of the mothers surveyed, 47.3% had a birth interval of less than two years. The overall prevalence rate of contraceptive use was 32.12%. The most popular method was the IUD that accounted for 57.9% of all contraceptive use. Women between the ages of 20 and 40 who had four or more living children, showed the highest prevalence rate of contraceptive use. Results also seemed to indicate that the sex of the youngest child affected contraceptive use. Mothers whose youngest child is male were more likely to use the IUD. Based on the results, the author provides several recommendations that should be implemented Agency-wide. These focus on increasing community-wide awareness of family planning methods and the risks associated with early marriage and pregnancy.