In a large district maternity hospital 1,079 women patients were interviewed about the perceived need for surgical sterilization. Of the patients interviewed 3·7% had been booked for this procedure and a further 8·7% expressed a desire to undergo sterilization at the time of interview. This wish was not limited to European women but was frequently expressed among the immigrant groups.
A sample of patients' husbands, contacted by means of a questionnaire about vasectomy, revealed that 10·7% of the sample of 262 replying would request immediate vasectomy if this were available. Some implications for planning any extension of these services are discussed.
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