News - NFP, Failure in Payatas

In 2003, the Institute on Church and Social Issues (ICSI) initiated the Tahanan NFP Program in Payatas, Quezon City. It offered methods acceptable to the Catholic Church, which might help to meet the needs of the people while testing the feasibility of parish-based and community-based NFP program staffed by local trainers.

In 2008, with support from the Philippine Center for Population and Development (PCPD), ICSI decided to evaluate the program.

Results of the study showed, of the 390 women interviewed, 260 or 66.67% never used NFP despite four years of training, recruitment and follow-up work of the Tahanan NFP Program in Payatas. Of the 130 users, 103 stopped using NFP due to pregnancy, difficulty in using the methods, lack of support from the husband, desire to have a child, absence/death of husband, and menopausal age of the user. Eleven former users of the Billings Ovulation Method (BOM) and five former users of the Standard Days Method (SDM) admitted using back-up methods such as pills or condoms during the period of abstinence. After four years of work, the Program has only produced 27 current users out of the 130 users.

The study concludes there is a degree of "trainer failure" in instructing women on NFP. This failure is possible in any program, which aims at a target number of recruited practitioners, but cannot provide intense training and follow-up of both trainers and trainees. There is a question also of how one communicates values, which is essential to a successful NFP program.