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FPKNOABS (V304_12)
Know about abstinence for FP

Codes and Frequencies

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FPKNOABS (V304_12) indicates whether the woman knew about abstinence as a method for family planning. Some samples differentiate between spontaneous and probed affirmative responses; see Comparability.


Along with question wording differences, FPKNOABS (V304_12) differs in the degree of detail in affirmative response codes.

In most samples, the woman is first asked to list known methods of contraception in an open-ended question, and then is probed with descriptions of the methods not spontaneously mentioned. The other samples use only yes/no questions describing each contraceptive method. Because not all samples distinguish between spontaneous and probed affirmative responses, IPUMS-DHS uses composite coding, with all affirmative responses sharing a first digit of "1," and with the second digit distinguishing between "yes, spontaneously" (code "11") and "yes, probed" (code "12").

In addition, some samples did not specifically ask about abstinence, but respondents could volunteer this method when asked about "any other methods."

Comparability - Standard DHS

FPKNOABS (V304_12) is included in the standard DHS questionnaire for all Phases, though many countries did not specifically refer to abstinence on their survey forms.

Starting in Phase 4, the response set reduced to two response categories ("yes" and "no"), eliminating the distinction between spontaneous and probed affirmative responses. In Phase 6, only the probing question is provided in the survey form, and the open-ended question is dropped.


  • Burkina Faso 1993: All women age 15-49.
  • Burkina Faso 1998: All women age 15-49.
  • Burkina Faso 2003: All women age 15-49.
  • Burundi 1987: All women age 15-49.
  • Cameroon 1991: All women age 15-49.
  • Jordan 1990: Ever-married women age 15-49.
  • Jordan 1997: Ever-married women age 15-49.
  • Mali 1987: All women age 15-49.
  • Morocco 1987: Ever-married women age 15-49.
  • Tanzania 1996: All women age 15-49.
  • Zambia 1996: All women age 15-49.
  • Burkina Faso: 1993-W, 1993-C, 1993-B, 1998-W, 1998-C, 1998-B, 2003-W, 2003-C, 2003-B
  • Burundi: 1987-C, 1987-B, 1987-W
  • Cameroon: 1991-W, 1991-C, 1991-B
  • Jordan: 1990-W, 1990-C, 1990-B, 1997-W, 1997-C, 1997-B
  • Mali: 1987-W, 1987-C, 1987-B
  • Morocco: 1987-W, 1987-C, 1987-B
  • Tanzania: 1996-B, 1996-W, 1996-C
  • Zambia: 1996-B, 1996-W, 1996-C