Setting the stage for strengthened annual monitoring of family planning program performance at the state/national level in Myanmar

Although Myanmar has made good progress in family planning by increased contraceptive prevalence rate (CPR) from 41% in 2007 to 52.2% in 2016, it remains lower than the target of 60% by 2020. There are also huge disparities sub-nationally, ranging from 25% to 60%. While there is a strong need to monitor the progress of family planning program regularly at the national and sub-national level, Myanmar has limited surveys, data quality and methodological issues in its Health Management Information System (HMIS), and a scattered rollout of the Logistic Management Information System (LMIS).

To identify viable options for annual monitoring, four data sources: modelled contraceptive prevalence rate for modern methods (mCPR) estimates from Track20’s  Family Planning Estimation Tool (FPET); method-specific prevalence from the  2015-16 Myanmar Demographic and Health Survey (DHS); mCPR estimates and method prevalence from  HMIS and estimates of modern method use (EMU) based on commodity consumption data from LMIS, were used to compare for the years 2015-2017. Estimates of mCPR from HMIS were tested for accuracy based on whether they fell within the 95% confidence interval of mCPR estimates from the FPET for the corresponding years. EMU from LMIS was also tested for those years and states/regions where available.

For annual tracking of mCPR, direct estimates of HMIS were considered; they were much higher than those of the DHS survey and were not matched by FPET results, except in Chin and Kayin. To monitor the method mix, HMIS data can be used as these are similar pattern with DHS in both national and State/Regional level except Chin and Kayin. LMIS could be used in annual tracking when there are high reporting rates and valid information of consumption.

Conclusions: Track20’s FPET is the method of choice to get valid information for annual monitoring of family planning program.