Purpose: Family planning (FP) is a key global health issue for achieving millennium development goals by 2015. The aim of this study was to identify predictors of changes in FP practice before and after interventions among Ethiopian women of reproductive age in a rural area. Methods: This study used a panel survey to identify predictors that placed women at greater risk for non-use of FP methods. The sample consisted of 407 women aged 19-49 years old living in a rural community of Ethiopia who completed both a baseline and follow-up survey. Trained local enumerators conducted face-to-face interviews during home visits. Patterns of FP practice were categorized into four groups: FP use at both baseline and follow-up; use at baseline but non-use at follow-up; non-use at baseline but use at follow-up; non-use at both baseline and follow-up. Logistic regression and classification and regression tree analyses were used. Results: In a binary logistic regression, women over 35 years old with a negative attitude towards FP and resided in the Sibu area were less likely to start FP practice. Women over 35 years who were in poor health and resided in Sibu were less likely to continue FP practice. For the decision tree, age was the primary node for FP non-users at baseline while area of residence was the primary node for FP users at baseline. Conclusion: Age, health status, attitude towards FP, and area of residence are the primary considerations when developing FP interventions for Ethiopian women in a resource-limited rural area.
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