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Cotonou

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OVERVIEW

Contraception (Birth Control)[edit | edit source]

General Note: There are many types of contraceptives, also known as "birth control," including IUDs, oral contraceptives, patches, shots, and condoms, etc. If you would like to view a full list, click here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

In Benin, contraceptive options are available, and public health facilities are required to provide family planning services. However, public health facilities sometimes struggle from stock-outs or a lack of trained personnel, especially in rural or remote areas.[1]

Generally speaking, contraceptive usage is not very high among women. In 2015, it was estimated that about 17% of women, aged 15-49, used any form of contraception (modern or traditional), including traditional methods. This was right at the West African regional average (about 17% of women). The most common modern forms of contraception were injectables (3% of women), condoms (3% of women), implants (1% of women), and IUDs (less than 1% of women). The most common traditional methods were the rhythm method (3% of women), various/uncategorized traditional methods (2% of women), and withdrawal (1% of women).[2]

Unplanned pregnancies are fairly common, with an estimated 19% of births unplanned.[1]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

Costs[edit | edit source]

Emergency Contraception (Morning After Pill)[edit | edit source]

Important Notes: Emergency contraception may prevent pregnancy for three days (72 hours) and sometimes five days (120 hours) after unprotected sex. Take EC as soon as possible after unprotected sex. If you don't have access to dedicated EC, oral contraceptives can be used as replacement EC, but remember the following: 1) Only some contraceptives work as EC 2) Different contraceptives require different dosages and time schedules to work as EC 3) You must only use the first 21 pills in 28-day packs and 4) They may be less effective than dedicated EC. For general information on emergency contraceptives, click here and here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

In Benin, emergency contraceptive pills (morning after pills) are available over-the-counter at pharmacies. No prescription is required. The lowest cadre of health workers who are legally allowed to dispense emergency contraceptive pills (in both the public and private sectors) is auxiliary nurses.[3]

It is estimated that about 19% of women (of reproductive age) in Benin have knowledge of emergency contraceptive pills, as of 2011-12, and about 1 % of women (of reproductive age) in Benin women have ever used emergency contraceptive pills, as of 2006.[3]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

  • You can find emergency contraceptive pills (morning after pills) at pharmacies, clinics, and programs affiliated with the International Planned Parenthood Foundation. They are sold over-the-counter (no prescription needed). Some brands you may find are NorLevo 1.5mg, Optinor, Vikela, and ellaOne.[3] According to a traveler who has visited Benin, "Most pharmacies carry emergency contraceptives, including name brands such as Norlevo and ellaOne. Because Benin suffers from a large number of fake and counterfeit drugs, be careful of what you select and where."
  • Tip: See SuzyKnew!'s video on finding Emergency Contraceptives in Benin.
  • Note: The longest-lasting EC is currently ellaOne. It lasts up to 5 days (120 hours) after unprotected sex. Check to see if your country carries ellaOne. If your country doesn't carry ellaOne, copper IUDs may also prevent pregnancy up to 5 days after unprotected sex. If none of these options are available, and it's been over 3 days since you had unprotected sex, you can still take EC, which may work up to 5 days. Note that EC pills are not 100% effective and should be taken as soon as possible.

Costs[edit | edit source]

  • According to one source (a tourist who traveled to Benin), "prices range from $5 - $8 for emergency contraceptive pills." According to the International Consortium on Emergency Contraception, "The price of LNG EC ranges from 500 - 3000 franc CFA (XOF) ($1.04 - $6.25), as of 2013."[3]
  • Tip: "Both branded and generic emergency contraceptives can be found in Cotonou. However, some may be of dubious sources and Benin suffers from a larger number of fake and counterfeit drugs. Norlevo can be found for around $6 and Ella One can be found for a similar price."

Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs/STDs)[edit | edit source]

Important Notes - Learn about PEP and PrEP: If you think that you've been recently exposed to HIV (i.e. within 72 hours), seek out PEP (Post-Exposure Prophylaxis). It's a month-long treatment to prevent HIV infection after exposure, and it may be available in your city. Take PEP as soon as possible. For more information, click here. If you are at risk of HIV exposure, seek out PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis). It's a daily oral pill that can prevent HIV infection before exposure. To learn more about PrEP, click here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

Testing Facilities[edit | edit source]

Support[edit | edit source]

Costs[edit | edit source]

Medications & Vaccines[edit | edit source]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

Costs[edit | edit source]

Menstruation[edit | edit source]

Note: In addition to pads and tampons, you can also use menstrual cups and menstrual underwear for your period. To learn more about menstrual cups, click here. To learn more about menstrual underwear, click here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

Costs[edit | edit source]

Gynecological Exams[edit | edit source]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

Costs[edit | edit source]

Pregnancy[edit | edit source]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

Costs[edit | edit source]

Abortion[edit | edit source]

Important Note: There are two main types of abortions: medical (also known as the "abortion pill") and surgical (also known as "in-clinic"). For medical abortions, you take a pill to induce abortion. For surgical abortions, a procedure is performed to induce abortion. For general information about medical and surgical abortions, click here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

Costs[edit | edit source]

Advocacy & Counseling[edit | edit source]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

Costs[edit | edit source]

List of Additional Resources[edit | edit source]

  • Ministry of Health - Benin
  • The Association Béninoise pour la Promotion de la Famille (ABPF): "The Association Béninoise pour la Promotion de la Famille (ABPF) has been operating for 38 years. ABPF offers family planning, ante-natal and post-abortion care, infertility treatment, screening of cancers of the reproductive system, and management of sexually transmitted infections (including HIV and AIDS). Its service points include permanent and mobile clinics."
  • Equaldex - Benin: Click here to learn about LGBTQ rights and laws in Benin. It is important to understand that homosexuality is illegal in Benin, as of 2018.

References[edit | edit source]