The reproductive health survey of Albania has provided baseline data for new developments in recent years in this field, developments which have affected lifestyle, legislation, policies and social services. Until this survey was in place there was no comprehensive comparative analysis of the main indicators of family planning and reproductive health, utilizing data from a nation-wide representative sample.
A principal objective of the study was to examine the reproductive health status of the population and needs that can be used to help direct or modify program interventions. Until this survey, relatively little detailed and reliable population-based information was available about important reproductive health topics in the country.
The RHS examines patterns and levels of fertility, contraceptive use and method selection, health behaviors, knowledge of HIV/AIDS, attitudes toward specific contraceptive methods, domestic violence and sexual abuse, as well as sex education and sexual behavior of young adults. These data are particularly useful in assisting policy makers and program officials in evaluating health service needs and identifying reproductive health behaviors associated with poor health outcomes.
Kind of Data
Sample survey data [ssd]
Unit of Analysis
Men age 15-49 years
Women age 15-33 years
The 2002 Albania RHS covers: fertility trends and levels, maternal and child health, awareness and use of contraceptives, reproductive health, health behaviors, knowledge of HIV/AIDS transmission and prevention, young adults, and violence against women.
Producers and sponsors
Institute of Public Health (IPH)
Institute of Statistics
Division of Reproductive Health
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
United States Agency for International Development
United Nations Population Fund
United Nations Children’s Fund
The Albania RHS 2002 is based on in-person, face-to-face interviews with 5,697 women and 1,740 men in their homes. The household-based survey was designed to collect information from a representative sample of men and women of reproductive age throughout Albania. Respondents were selected from the universe of all females aged 15-44 years and all males aged 15-49 years, regardless of marital status, who were living in Albania when the survey was conducted. Male and female samples were selected independently.
For analysis purposes, three strata were constructed for the sampling design: Metro Tirana, other urban areas and other rural areas. Metro Tirana includes 6 of the 19 communes in Tirana district: Bashkia Tirane (capital city of Tirana) , Kamez, Vore, Farke, Kashar and Paskuqan. These six communes include 85% of the District population and an estimated 92% of the urban population in the District. The "Other Urban Area" stratum includes urban areas outside of Metro Tirana and the "Other Rural Area" stratum includes all rural areas outside of Metro Tirana.
Note: See detailed sample design information in the final report which is provided in this documentation.
Of the 10,316 households selected in the female household sample, 5,866 (57%) included at least one eligible woman (age 15-44 years). One-third (34%) of households did not include an eligible woman and 8% of households were unoccupied, principally in rural areas (12%). Of the identified respondents, 5,697 were successfully interviewed, yielding an individual response rate of 97% for an overall response rate of 97% for women. Virtually all respondents who were selected to participate in the sample agreed to be interviewed and were very cooperative. Less than one percent refused to be interviewed. Response rates were similar in all three strata.
The male sample totaled 3,965 households with 1,831 (46%) including at least one eligible man (age 15-49 years). A lower percentage of households included an eligible male than did the female sample (include an eligible female) due, in part, to the emigration of males of working age. A total of 1,740 eligible males were interviewed for a 95% individual response rate, yielding an overall response rate of 94% (.95 x 99%). As with the female sample, refusals were less than one percent and response rates in the three strata were similar.
Note: See summarized response rates by strata in Table 2.1A and 2.1B of the report which is presented in this documentation.
The individual questionnaire included information on each respondent's education, employment, living arrangements, and other background characteristics, as well as histories of marriage, divorce and cohabitation, sexual experience, pregnancy and contraceptive use. Additional questions investigated health risk behaviors that may affect reproductive health (smoking and drinking habits), women's health screening practices, young adult sexual and contraceptive behavior, knowledge and attitudes related to HIV/AIDS, and intimate partner violence. The questionnaire was developed in English and translated into Albanian and underwent two pretests. The second pretest, in May 2002, was performed to test changes in the questionnaire made after the first pretest.
Dates of Data Collection
Data Collection Notes
The interviews were performed by 25 female and 8 male interviewers specially trained in interview techniques, survey procedures, and questionnaire content before the beginning of fieldwork. Interviewer training took place in the Health Authority Training Center, a facility next to the headquarters of the Albanian National Institute of Public Health (IPH), just before data collection began and consisted of one week of classroom training in fieldwork procedures and proper administration of the questionnaire and one week of practical training in the field with close monitoring by the trainers. At the end of the training period, five female and two male teams were selected for the fieldwork. Each team consisted of one Supervisor, four Interviewers, and a Driver. Fieldwork was managed by staff of IPH with technical assistance from CDC/DRH. The overall fieldwork implementation was supervised by two fieldwork coordinators. Fieldwork lasted from August through December 2002. Each team was assigned to visit a number of primary sampling units in all regions of the country and traveled by car throughout the country on planned itineraries. Interviews were conducted at the homes of the respondents and lasted on average about 35 minutes for both men and women. Interviews were conducted in Albanian. Completed questionnaires were first reviewed in the field by team supervisors and then were taken by the fieldwork coordinators, who also reviewed them, to the National Institute for Statistics (INSTAT) headquarters where they were reviewed again by a data quality consultant before data processing.