COVID-19 Spurs Rise In Birth Control Interest


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It seems that the pandemic is killing the baby fever and it may not necessarily be a bad thing.

According to the Commission on Population and Development (POPCOM), the Philippines has one of the highest population growth rates in the ASEAN region, but it’s projected to slow down at the end of this year. At least there is one good thing coming out of this pandemic.

To supplement this claim, iPrice Group conducted a study that shows the Philippines’ growing interest in birth control. Based on the results, it looks like Filipinos aren’t taking any chances in having unwanted children during a worldwide pandemic (which is already challenging on its own).

Overall, the country’s Google searches on contraceptives (birth control pills, condoms, emergency contraceptives, and even vasectomy) grew by 96% in the first trimester of 2021 compared to the same period of 2019. It has been on a steady upward slope since 2020.

Birth control pills garnered the most Google searches. It reached an all-time high in March 2021, resulting in more than 180,000 searches. Searches surged by 91% in 2021 compared to 2019.

Interest in condoms, the most accessible form of contraception, rose by 79%. This was followed by emergency contraceptives, such as plan B pills, which saw a 76% increase.

Vasectomy, a medical procedure that prevents pregnancy 99% of the time, has surged by a shocking 211%. New dads that will be celebrated this upcoming Father’s Day might be less than usual since men are becoming more interested in getting the snip.

Google searches on the contraceptives mentioned have started to see an increase in 2020 and have been on a steady upward trajectory since then. The notable surges began around the “ber months” of the pandemic’s first year. For instance, searches on vasectomy reached an all-time high in November and December 2020, which are 196% more than the same months of 2019’s searches.

As the country continues to get more people vaccinated, it is unclear what it means on its behavior towards contraception. Filipino priests have publicly ostracized the Reproductive Health Law for many years, which isn’t as effective as initially hoped. With the current trend, however, it seems that the population growth is slowing down for now, and more Filipinos are at the very least interested in contraception.

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