Cross River State: Society For Family Health Achieves Set Goals

By Eme Offiong, Calabar

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The Society for Family Health (SFH) has raised the contraception compliance rate amongst women of reproductive age from 21 to 66 percent, after two years intervention in Cross River State, southern Nigeria.

This was achieved through the implementation of Delivering Innovation in Self-care (DISC) project with funding from the Children Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF) with collaboration of the Ministry of Health and relevant stakeholders especially at the primary healthcare level.

Some of the women, who embraced family planning, identified the self-injectable known as Sayana press to be the best and ideal option due to the acclaimed benefits derived from its use.

Testimonials

One of the beneficiaries of the self-injection, Mrs. Atim Offiong said, “I started using Sayana press in 2022 after I heard about how its effectiveness. I visited the primary healthcare centre in Akpabuyo, where a nurse further educated me about other family planning methods. However, I settled for Sayana press because it saves time; it is free; and I self-inject in the comfort of my home.”

Also another beneficiary known as Mrs. Janet Edem said, “since I started using Sayana press, I have no experienced any side effect. It has helped me save money on transportation to the facility and helped me space my children. Now, I have time for my business.”

Significant impact

The Senior Learning Advisor on the DISC Project, Dr. Oluwaseun Adeleke explained that SFH had made remarkable impact in Cross River State and Nigeria in general, attributing the feat achieved to the support from the governments.

Adeleke noted, “the Cross River State contraceptive prevalent rate currently could be better. But, there were challenges to achieving the target. However, the self-care uptake was around 21 percent at inception baseline. Right now we are looking at 66 percent among those, who choose injectable; that is really significant.

“Also, due to the support we have enjoyed from the states we are in, we have been able to make a dent in the national impact. The national average impact rose from 13 percent to 44 percent, which is really significant and driven by the states where we work,” he said.

The senior learning advisor urged the governments to expand the scope of intervention to other areas by leveraging on technology, laid out strategies and innovations.

The commitment

The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Egbe Ayuk represented by the Director Public Health in the Cross River State Ministry of Health, Dr. Jonah Offor commended SFH for the intervention, which he noted had empowered women to take charge of their reproductive health.

He said, “for these two years they have been with us, they have achieved a lot. The impact of the project in Cross River State has prepared us as a state to take ownership of this project. Already, the funding for the project was captured in the 2024 budget, an indication of our preparedness to take ownership of the project and expand to other areas.”

He added that the state government was strategising on developing its human capital base in the healthcare delivery system for optimal output.

 

 

Mercy Chukwudiebere

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