At least 2 in 5 Kenyan youth now live with reduced access to contraceptives of choice.
As COVID-19 continues to take a toll on every aspect of Kenyan society, the well-being of Kenyan youth hangs in the balance.
#Formnigani, a creative movement led by young Kenyans advocating for national conversation on contraception in Kenya, conducted a survey to find out the critical issues and decisions surrounding contraception during COVID-19.
This new report elaborates that 53% of the young Kenyans are experiencing challenges in accessing contraception as the pharmacies they frequented were either closed or operating on greatly reduced opening times down during the pandemic.
Disruptions in services, from closure of some contraception access points to shortages in supplies, together with measures taken to curb the pandemic are contributing to the faltering of family planning programmes in the country.
The closure of colleges and universities for example, has seen an estimated 16.7% of young Kenyans lose access to free contraceptives, with a further 13.3% reporting a shortage of male condoms in government health facilities.
In this new reality, a higher number of Kenyan youth whose contraception needs were previously being met may find themselves among the “underserved” or marginalized as new factors play a greater role in influencing access and usage. Reduction and loss of income, for example, mean that individual priorities and attitudes change if uncertainties persist