Tauseef Ahmed, Pathfinder International’s country representative said, “Devolution was done in a hurry without capacity-building of provincial counterparts for their new responsibilities.” Family planning is the right of every woman and by depriving them, you’re putting their lives at stake, he added.
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Family Planning: Coverage, Access to Services Poor, Says Report by Pathfinder International and UNFPA
“The Women Development Army are women that have implemented the health extension program of government very well so that others in their communities can see what they are benefitting out of this health extension program so that they can adapt or adopt what this Women Development Army are doing,” said Tariku Nigatu, who works with Pathfinder International in Ethiopia.
Tune in to hear "voices to inspire" speak from the International Conference on Family Planning in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Pasiens Mapunda, a reproductive health expert at Pathfinder International, told IRIN that while "women are beginning to take up family planning and facility births are increasing" challenges such as "inadequate health facilities, long distance[s] from homes to the nearest available hospital and even low staffing still remain and needs to be dealt with."
Dr. Mengistu Asnake of Ethiopia is the second recipient of the 2013 EXCELL award for family planning achievement at the individual level. Dr. Asnake is Pathfinder International’s Country Representative in Ethiopia, and also serves as its Chief of Party for the Integrated Family Health Program. Dr. Asnake has played a key role in the development of national family planning strategies and guidelines.
Civil society and NGOs are also essential to these efforts. A USAID partnership with Pathfinder International and John Snow, Inc. is using innovative task-sharing programs to expand access to long-acting contraceptives in rural areas through community-based provision of implants.
At a rural health post in the Tigray region, we spoke to a young woman named Meheret, who has been a health extension worker for eight years, and had received training through the USAID-funded Integrated Family Health Program implemented by Pathfinder International. She has seen many changes during that time but remembers well the tough challenges at the outset.
This Wednesday, at the International Conference on Family Planning in Addis Ababa, Pathfinder International discussed innovative approaches for scaling-up family planning services in places where socio-cultural barriers play a significant role in hindering a women’s ability to plan her family.
Focus Area: Adolescent and Youth Sexual and Reproductive Health, Contraception & Family Planning
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According to Pathfinder's study, the targets and goals related to family planning have not been achieved due to lack of clear policies, planning, a governance mechanism and limited coordination among relevant stakeholders. It also mentioned that coverage and access was found lacking as the departments of health did not own the program.
One of the most important indicators of SCIP’s progress to date therefore is the steady increase in couple years of protection (CYP) over the life of the project, from 31,131 in the first year to 71,750 at the end of year three. In fact, year three data underestimate CYP because they do not include implants, which were introduced in May 2012.
Dr. Mengistu Asnake, IFHP Head and Pathfinder Country Director, said the program supports the Ethiopian Public Health System on Reproductive Health, particularly on Family Planning and Maternal, Newborn and Child Health. He said significant achievements are registered in IFHP project implementation regions. Commendable successes have been registered in intensifying efforts to prevent causes of maternal morbidity and mortality by improving access to family planning and maternal health care.
In 2011, when the Nature Conservancy joined forces with healthcare nonprofit Pathfinder International, the Frankfurt Zoological Society and the Tanzanian government, the partners hoped to disrupt a deepening cycle of overfishing, habitat destruction, and poverty around Tanzania’s Lake Tanganyika.