How should vasectomy be promoted in Guatemala?

P. T. Piotrow, D. L. Kincaid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


In the article "Evaluation of a Communications Program to Increase Adoption of Vasectomy in Guatemala" by J.T. Bertrand et al (Stud Fam Plann 1987 Nov/Dec), the authors conclude that the use of a male promoter alone was 4 times more cost-effective in increasing the number of vasectomies than the use of radio alone because the costs of the radio program were 4 times higher. This conclusion is questionable for several reasons. 1) The district where the promoter was used alone was twice as large as the radio-only district. 2) In one of the promoter-only districts the same promoter worked throughout the program, but in the other, 3 different promoters had to be recruited and trained, due to high personnel turnover. 3) The initial costs of a radio program may be higher, but 1 program can be broadcast in all districts with little or no extra cost, whereas the costs of a promoter would have to be multiplied by the number of districts. 4) Although the promoter and the radio program produced approximately equal numbers of vasectomies, the radio messages reached over 70% of the people surveyed. Thus, on a national basis, radio broadcasts would be far more cost-effective than the use of salaried promoters in each district.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)248-249
Number of pages2
JournalStudies in family planning
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 1988

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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