Plans underway to decentralise family planning

Community health workers could soon start distributing family planning products in their respective areas if plans to decentralise the programme are endorsed.

Community health workers could soon start distributing family planning products in their respective areas if plans to decentralise the programme are endorsed.

According to Dr Leonald Kagabo, the in charge of family planning programme at the Ministry of Health, involving community health workers in family planning campaigns would increase the percentage of women using contraceptives in the country.

This is because the health workers operate right within the villages and can easily spearhead the programme thus making it more successful.

“Community health workers are the ones who have a daily contact with residents in their village; mobilisation and service provision are thus very easy for them,” he told The New Times.

Health workers will be highly trained on the use of contraceptive methods, including injection, pills, condoms as well as providing advice for the various family planning methods, Kagabo said.  

However, first-time seekers of the services will directly receive them from health centres where they would be advised on which method to use, according to the official.

Family planning products have been distributed majorly through public and private health facilities but officials believe decentralising the programme would help improve the numbers of people using them.

Fifty two per cent of women in Rwanda use contraceptives; 45 per cent use modern contraceptives, while 6 per cent use traditional methods, according to the latest Demographic Health Survey report.

 

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