Context: Little empirical evidence shows whether quality of family planning care influences continued use of contraception, and if so, to what extent.
Methods: Interviews were conducted in 1997-1998 with 1,728 new family planning users who had sought services at 80 service delivery points in Davao del Norte and Compostela Valley, the Philippines, to assess the quality of care received from family planning services providers. More than 16 months later, 1,460 of the respondents participated in a follow-up survey; the respondents' current contraceptive status was recorded.
Results: The quality of care received at the time a woman adopted a contraceptive method influenced her contraceptive use at follow-up, after adjustment for the effects of background characteristics. Furthermore, use increased steadily with quality: The predicted probabilities of contraceptive use were 55% for low-quality care, 62% for medium-quality care and 67% for high-quality care.
Conclusion: A focus on quality improvement would benefit both programs and users.