FG, stakeholders move to high-end primary health care, family planning

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Henry Uche Stories

In an attempt to encourage family planning, birth spacing, and access to modern contraceptives as a way to prevent unwanted pregnancies and, in most cases, abortion – which can undoubtedly lead to death of some women, the federal government through the reproductive health division of the federal health ministry has signaled its commitment to improving access to primary health care (PHC) and expanding family planning by including community pharmacists , sellers of patents and proprietary medicines (PPMV).

This resolution was announced at the IntegratE Project Media Roundtable recently organized by Nigeria Health Watch (NHW) in collaboration with the Society for Family Health and key stakeholders in the health sector.

The media conference that shed light on the activities and results of the 4-year IntegratE project, also x-rayed the impact of the project on the delivery of family planning services in Nigeria.

Speaking during the presentation of the project, the project director, Mr. Emeka Okafor, explained that the project was a four-year initiative (2017-2021) funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and MSD for Mothers.

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He also said the project is being implemented by a consortium of partners led by the Society for Family Health and other stakeholders such as Marie Stopes International Organization Nigeria, Population Council and PharmAccess.

“The project aims to establish a regulatory system with the Board of Pharmacists of Nigeria (PCN) to ensure that community pharmacists (PCs) and sellers of patented and proprietary medicines (PPMV) provide quality family planning services, comply with family planning regulations and report a statistical service to the Health Management Information System (HMIS), ”he said.

Some of the main findings of the first phase of the project revealed that a total of 209,363 women have access to family planning from PCs and PPMVs, resulting in a remarkable result of 17,871 unregistered pregnancies. desired avoided. Likewise, 94,109 people were reported as new family planning clients while 62,051 were listed in the couple years of protection (CYP) parameters.

Highlighting the results of the first phase of the project, Okafor noted that the IntegratE project trained community pharmacists in two pilot states (Lagos and Kaduna) to provide and report on family planning services using the national information system. existing health management system.

“The project has successfully trained community pharmacists in Kaduna and Lagos with plans to expand family planning services to other states as well as additional training in primary health care services.

In his remarks, the Director / Head of the Reproductive Health Division of the Federal Ministry of Health, Dr Kayode Afolabi, commended the initiative and those responsible for implementing the project for their intervention in improving health outcomes. primary health care and family planning services in Nigeria.

“The project is innovative and full of promises and since 2017 has piloted a multi-level accreditation system, implemented by the PCN to test a model of delegation of tasks including CPs and PPMVs with a view to a future implementation. the scale.

“A revised task-sharing and task-delegation (TSTS) policy comprising health-trained PPMVs and CPs has the potential to dramatically improve access to primary health care for Nigerians, especially deserved populations,” by expanding services and supplies through these retail channels in a way that ensures quality and sustainability.

Afolabi pointed out that the PPMV’s tiered accreditation system is piloted in collaboration with the Reproductive Health Division of FMoH, and the PCN has great potential to dramatically increase the uptake of family planning, especially in rural and hard-to-reach communities with trained health services. PPMVs and community pharmacists.

“Evidence from this project may inform the government’s decision to revise policies that will facilitate the expansion of FP and other PHC services through these frameworks of access to health providers across the country. ” he added.

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