“We have to go further, we need to accelerate it. We need to use these kinds of methods of delivery so we get more people to come to the health center and get the reality of family planning services because it is important for Rwanda,” said Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) executive director during his visit to Rwamagana health facilities.
Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin and the Dutch Minister for Foreign Trade and Development, Lilianne Ploumen accompanied by Patrick Ndimubanzi, the Minister of State in charge of primary health care in the Ministry of Health, first visited Rwamagana District medical warehouse to examine its procurement and supply chain management.
Photo: Dr. Babatunde (L) with Ploumen inspect medical warehouse with some of UNFPA supplies
Inspecting the contraceptives in stock, the supply chain management from central warehouse to beneficiaries, electronic logistic management information system (ELMIS) and the involvement in quantification and forecast exercise, Ploumen was impressed with the warehouse management.
The officials proceeded to Rwamagana health centre, where they looked at family planning activities and how they are integrated with other Reproductive, Maternal and Newborn Health (RMNH) services. Here, hey they inspected family planning provisions, integration approach and linkage with community based health workers and community.
Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin and Minister Ploumen were mostly grateful for community-based provision of services done by Marie Josee Mukankuranga, a Community Health Worker who was visited in her home after the health facilities.
Marie Jose Mukankuranga, a voluntary reproductive health counselor in her village, explained to the officials how she administers family planning to clients, the tools she uses in reporting, stock management and registration. She says many people are responding to family planning positively and the most preferred method is injectable_ Depo-Provera
Minister Ploumen appreciated the nearness of the health services to the people, adding that the Government has made the health system strong and efficient.
Josee Mukankuranga, a community health worker explains to Dr. Babatunde and Ploumen how family planning is delivered to community members in her village
In an interview after the visit to three places, Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin, the executive director of UNFPA, said that there is progress in family planning services and more support is needed for the Community Health Workers who do a great job.“We were explaining to them that family planning saves lives, it gives women opportunities to develop themselves, to build families, and earn income so they can have the number of children they can afford,” Dr. Babatunde added.
In Rwanda, the uptake of family planning services stand at 48 per cent from 45 per cent in 2010, being higher among educated than uneducated women, according to the latest demographic and health survey released by the National Institute of Statistics Rwanda recently.
UNFPA is the world’s largest provider of contraceptives, accounting for 42 per cent of all contraception procured by donors on behalf of developing countries. UNFPA convenes partners to help countries build stronger health systems and widen access to quality contraceptives and lifesaving medicines for maternal health.