This paper addresses internal migration and contraceptive use in Myanmar. Migration is a multidimensional phenomenon of economic and social importance and has significant impacts on sustainable development. Myanmar remains a predominantly rural country with among the lowest levels of awareness and use of modern contraceptives. Rapid urbanization, however, is creating often remarkably large gaps between modern contraceptive use in rural and urban areas.
The study analyzed data from the 2015-16 Myanmar Demographic and Health Survey (MDHS), the first DHS survey conducted in the country. In our analysis, current use of modern contraception is the dependent variable, and the main independent variable is the migration stream, which was categorized as urban nonmigrant, urban-to-urban migrant, urban-to-rural migrant, rural-to-urban migrant, rural-to-rural migrant, and rural nonmigrant. The association between modern contraceptive use and migration is analyzed using cross tabulations with descriptive and logistic regression analysis.
The results show that urban-to-urban migration is associated with increasing use of modern contraception. This finding suggests that modern contraceptive behavior is influenced by changes in residence and the characteristics of the place of origin and destination. Other factors that show a strong correlation with the level of modern contraceptive use are women’s age, education, empowerment, desire for another child, number of children, and household wealth quintile. The issue of internal migration is important to planners, researchers, and policymakers to achieve better fertility behavior and to improve public policy for family planning and health services programs.