Adolescent Care Seeking for Family Planning in Madhya Pradesh and Odisha, India: A Low Equilibrium Trap?

Resource Type: Publication
Authors: Gupta, Y.P., Naveen Roy, and Priya Emmart
Published: September 2017

Resource Description: This report presents the findings of the investigation from both the adolescent and provider perspectives on the use of family planning services in the context of health systems and service delivery. Findings are grouped by the extent to which they offer opportunities, and have evidence of success in improving adolescent outcomes, within the existing health system. The recommendations address the principal finding that adolescent care seeking for family planning is in a low equilibrium trap1 where the demand for services is low and their supply is equally low, and fragmented. Adolescent girls have a low demand for contraceptive services in these districts, largely as a function of social norms relating to fertility, to socioeconomic circumstance, and limited accurate knowledge of the safety and range of available methods of to prevent pregnancy. Low demand fuels a cycle of disinterest in service provision that is buttressed by distorted incentives to providers, provider inefficacy related to adolescent health issues, lack of funded mechanisms to approach adolescents with quality services, and poor governance of supply systems. As in economic growth, unless there is a substantive shift in either the forces of demand or supply, it is unlikely that service use will shift to a higher level of equilibrium.

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