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Assessing changes in knowledge, attitudes, and intentions to use family planning after watching documentary and drama health education films: a qualitative study.

  • Mubangizi, Vincent1
  • Plastow, Jane2
  • Nakaggwa, Florence3
  • Nahabwe, Haven4
  • Natukunda, Sylvia5
  • Atim, Fiona3
  • Mawere, Brenda6
  • Laughton, Matthew7
  • Muller, Ingrid7
  • Owokuhaisa, Judith5
  • Coates, Sabine8
  • Chambers, Isabella8
  • Goodhart, Clare9
  • Willcox, Merlin7
  • 1 Mbarara University of Science and Technology, P.O. Box 1410, Mbarara, Uganda. [email protected] , (Uganda)
  • 2 School of English, The University of Leeds, Leeds, UK.
  • 3 Clarke International University, Kampala, Uganda. , (Uganda)
  • 4 Bwindi Community Hospital, Kanungu District, Uganda. , (Uganda)
  • 5 Mbarara University of Science and Technology, P.O. Box 1410, Mbarara, Uganda. , (Uganda)
  • 6 We are Walukuba Drama Group, Jinja, Uganda. , (Uganda)
  • 7 Primary Care Research Centre, School of Primary Care, Population Sciences and Medical Education, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK.
  • 8 University of Bristol Medical School, Bristol, UK.
  • 9 Royal College of General Practitioners, London, UK.
Published Article
Reproductive Health
Springer (Biomed Central Ltd.)
Publication Date
Mar 12, 2022
DOI: 10.1186/s12978-022-01370-5
PMID: 35279189


Thousands of women and children in Uganda die every year due to problems related to pregnancy and childbirth. About 20% of these deaths are avoidable by better use of contraception. Many women are reluctant to begin contraception because of fears and myths about side-effects, and because they need the agreement of their husbands. The aim of this research was to study whether health education films could address these fears, and to compare a short documentary with a short drama film. We produced two health education films (a documentary and a drama) in two local languages with the involvement of local people. Films aimed to (1) dispel some myths on contraception, (2) encourage men to attend at least one antenatal clinic with their wives, and (3) discuss with a health worker whether they would like a method of family planning after the delivery. We showed these films to focus groups of local women, men and health workers in four contrasting areas of Uganda. The people taking part in the focus groups discussed their reactions to the films, whether they had learned anything from them, whether their attitudes towards family planning had changed as a result, and whether they intended to discuss this with their partner. Viewing a short documentary on the contraceptive implant improved knowledge, and short drama films improved attitudes and intentions to discuss the implant with their partner. The documentary and drama had different advantages, and most participants wanted to see both.

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