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    Summary report: focus group interviews on family planning methods and products.

    Porter, Novelli and Associates

    [Unpublished] 1981 Dec. 45 p. (Contract No. NEB-00290-C-103700 EGYPT)

    The findings of a series of focus group interviews conducted by the Family of the Future in September 1981 on family planning methods and products are summarized in this report. Focus group interviews are conducted with about 8-10 respondents simultaneously. Using a discussion outline, a moderator guides the topics of conversation for about 90 minutes. 19 focus groups were conducted. The composition of these groups were current and previous users, spouses of users, and nonusers of oral contraceptives (OCs), tablets, and condoms. Across all user groups, participants felt that family planning was an important issue and that it was necessary for a man to have fewer children and to raise them well. A few of the women already had large families of 5-7 children but still considered family planning to be a good idea. Most respondents considered 2-3 children to be a good size family; 4-5 children was regarded as a large family. Several of the women who were nonusers of contraception had exposure to various family planning methods, both modern and traditional. Others had never used any contraceptive method. Women's responses for not using contraception differed from men's. In both user and nonuser groups, most of the men and women interviewed indicated that the decision to adopt family planning methods was a mutual decision between husband and wife, but many men felt that it is primarily the man's responsibility to decide. On the whole, the responsibility for using a particular method was considered to be the wife's. 5 focus groups were conducted to study the use of OCs: 2 with current users, 2 with previous users, and 1 with husbands of current users. Among both current and previous users, the OC was considered to be safer than the IUD and more reliable than the condom. All respondents thought OCs were very effective if used properly. Spouses of current users also noted that it caused certain side effects such as swelling, bleeding, and drowsiness. The quality and price of the product were considered more important than its packaging. OCs were considered to be widely available, and in regard to the new product, all the women liked the blue plastic compact. To study consumer perceptions of foaming tablets, 6 focus groups were conducted. Both previous and current users did not think the tablet was a very effective birth control method. Current users were satisfied with the tablet to the extent that the side effects were more tolerable than using OC or an IUD. Most respondents preferred the box of foil packages to the tube. Several respondents had heard about condoms on the radio or in family planning centers, and it was perceived as a safe and reliable birth control method. Packaging appeared to take 2nd place to the quality of the condom. Both men and women indicated that the men buy the condoms for themselves.
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