Family planning is a high-impact health intervention to reduce maternal and child mortality.
It is estimated that about 30% of maternal deaths could be avoided by the use of family planning services.
The challenges are to ensure improved maternal health, equity for women, the survival of children, the prevention of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, the fulfilment of women’s potential and the wellbeing of families.
It is also important to make it easier for sexually active women who do not want to get pregnant to access family planning services, if it is difficult for them to do so for cultural, financial or logistical reasons.
Entrusting the distribution of family planning products to the community.
Improving the range of family planning products offered.
Helping to promote action on family planning.
DISTRIBUTING FAMILY PLANNING PRODUCTS AT A COMMUNITY LEVEL
Ensuring family planning services are provided by community health workers to bring these services to households that are remote from health facilities. Six countries (Benin, Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea, Niger, Chad and Togo) have made the delegation of tasks to community health workers part their health policies and the community health workers have received training with the help of the French Muskoka Fund.
The addition of injectable contraceptives to the available product range constitutes a major step forward.
IMPROVING THE RANGE OF FAMILY PLANNING PRODUCTS OFFERED BY HEALTH FACILITIES
- Promoting new long-term contraceptive methods in health facilities.
- Improving service providers’ ability to offer the use of intrauterine devices (IUDs) and implants in several health facilities.
- Introducing IUDs post-partum as part of Muskoka’s continuum-based approach to health care.
- Providing technical support to countries via an inter-agency platform to scale up high-quality family planning and post-partum family planning services.
- Intensive training and practice for service providers in family planning counseling, IUD insertion and post-partum IUD insertion.
- Follow-up and strengthening of the teams that received training.
- Extending training to maternity hospitals in rural areas.
- Creating a regional pool of 18 trainers (obstetrician-gynecologists, gynecologist-surgeons and midwives).
- Trainer qualifications.
- Documenting the work carried out.
SOCIAL MOBILIZATION IN FAVOR OF FAMILY PLANNING
- Supporting the introduction of family planning communication plans developed by the countries.
- Setting up and strengthening partnerships with the media and community leaders and organizations to promote family planning. In several countries, community leaders have been educated, communication activities have been carried out by creating radio and TV commercials in several languages, flash cards have been created to stimulate conversation and posters and flyers have been designed to promote family planning.
SOME OF OUR ACCOMPLISHMENTS
The French Muskoka Fund is taking action to ensure strong family planning services in community health facilities, which is considered a high-impact intervention in terms of reducing maternal and infant mortality (community-based distribution and an improved range of family planning products in health facilities).
Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea, Niger, Togo and Chad: the community-based distribution of family planning products has been introduced, allowing community health workers to provide the service and bringing family planning services to households that are remote from health facilities. These five countries have made delegating tasks to community health workers part their health policies. The community health workers have received training with the support of the French Muskoka Fund.
The major innovation was the addition of injectable contraceptives to the available product range.
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