Sun. Jul 14th, 2024

Family Planning: FG To Scale-up Access, Demand For HIUDs

By Justina Auta

The Federal Ministry of Health and Social Welfare has pledged to scale-up access to Hormonal Intrauterine Device (HIUD), a reversible contraceptive device to promote expanded contraceptive method for family planning.

The Director, Family Health Department in the ministry, Dr Stella Nwosu, said this on Thursday, in Abuja at the close out and dissemination workshop of the completion of the Catalytic Opportunity Fund HIUD project.

Nwosu, represented by Alex Ugochukwu, Head of Logistics and Services, Family Plannig Unit in the ministry, said the project had encouraged lots of families to embrace the HIUD contraceptive method.

“And, this project has done a lot in repositioning family planning in the country, most especially in these two states (Sokoto and Bauchi), especially HIUD; it is for the client to choose.

“I want to believe there is no bias because when we are preaching HIUD, there should be censored bias.

“Balance counseling is the way. So, I commend everyone that is here for this particular occasion. They have done so well. And on behalf of the ministry will continue to support you,’’ she said.

She also commended EngenderHealth, the implementers of the HIUD project for their commitment towards improving maternal and Sexual Reproductive Services (SRH) in the country.

Dr Kabiru Atta, Country Representative, EngenderHealth, said the nine-month old 250,000 dollars HIUD project aimed at promoting expanded contraceptive method mix in Bauchi and Sokoto States.

Atta revealed that 46 health workers from 44 facilities in HIUD service delivery were trained to cascade it to down to 230 healthcare providers in Bauchi and Sokoto States.

He added that the project provided HIUD insertion kits and provided anatomical models to secondary health facilities to support increased service demand at facilities.

He said the organisation also advocated additional government funding and successfully secured budget allocation in Sokoto and Bauchi States for fiscal year 2024 to support commodity availability and retraining for healthcare providers.

Atta said Bauchi State Government doubled budget for family planning, increased allocation from N75 million in 2023 to N150 million in 2024, while Sokoto tripled it from N10 million in 2023 to N30 million in 2024.

“So, I think one of the successes of this project is the fact that we are able to get with Bauchi and Sokoto States to commit funding to procure commodities, which is really one of the biggest issues we face in the family planning space in Nigeria.

“So, with this budgetary commitment, we are hoping for a full long phase where we can actually support them using a recently released guideline that supports procurement of family planning commodities.

“We can support the states, mentor them and hopefully get their procurement system in place to be able to procure these commodities themselves,’’ he said.

Also, Dr Adamu Sambo, Bauchi State Commissioner for Health, pledged the commitment and support of the state to the project.

Sambo said the project was very impactful and successful in Bauchi State as women started accepting the HIUD to save lives, unwanted pregnancies.

“This has enabled the state to have good planning and have reduced our indices on those who have refused to have family planning,” he said. (NAN)

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