Background: The family planning (FP) practice rate of Ethiopian women of reproductive age is lower than in most other sub-Saharan African countries. Aim: To examine the status of FP practice and identify intrapersonal, interpersonal and community factors associated with FP practice among married Ethiopian women in a rural area. Methods: A cross-sectional survey was conducted with a convenient sample of 193 married women of reproductive age. A structured questionnaire, which was modified based on the Ethiopian Demographic Health Survey, was used. Multiple logistic regression analysis was conducted to identify factors associated with FP practice at three levels: intrapersonal, interpersonal and community. Results: Almost 67% of women were currently using at least one FP method and most women obtained FP methods from the public health sector. Short-term methods such as pills and injections were most commonly used. FP practice was significantly associated with willingness to use long-term or permanent FP methods in future and spousal discussion about FP. Conclusions: Both intrapersonal and interpersonal factors were related to FP practice. Community factors, however, need to be further assessed using various methods to plan a comprehensive and more culturally acceptable community-based FP program. Caution is needed to generalize the findings because of the convenient sample, but community-based FP programs emphasizing long-term or permanent methods and male involvement in FP counseling would be successful strategies to increase FP practice. Implications for nursing practice: Nurses and midwives need to be trained to provide knowledge and skills for long-term or permanent FP methods for service quality.
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