CHAM impressed with success registered in family planning advocacy in Nkhata Bay

Christian Health Association of Malawi (CHAM) has expressed delight with the success it has registered in the implementation of the Family Planning Advocacy Initiative in Nkhata Bay district.

CHAM implemented the initiative with financial support from its sister association in Zamiba – Christian Health Association of Zambia (CHAZ).

CHAZ provided US$33, 000 to CHAM to advocate for improved family planning utilization for a period from June 2021 to March 2022.

CHAM Family Planning Advocacy Coordinator, Pachalo Matchere.

CHAM Coordinator for Family Planning Advocacy, Pachalo Matchere said through the initiative, they implemented a number of activities including Public Private Partnership (PPP).

“We strengthened the relationship which the District Health Office (DHO) has with private clinics,” she said.

Matchere added that the initiative assisted the two sides to enter into agreement in order to improve utilization and access of modern family planning services.

Through the agreement, she said, the DHO provided commodities to the private clinics so that the provide to women and adolescent girls at a reduced cost.

Kwidu Community Friendly Clinic Director, Lameck Moyo.

The association believed that there were will be an increase of uptake of the services particularly by young people, she observed.

Matchere further said they selected Nkhata Bay due to its low prevalence rate of modern family planning now at 35 percent, far below the national prevalence rate of 47 per cent.

Apart from PPP, the initiative also assisted in the establishment of a technical working group at district level where the DHO meets partners in sexual reproductive health system on a monthly basis to avoid duplication of efforts.

However, Matchere said, since the initiative has proved to be successful, the association will replicate the same to other districts where there is low uptake of modern methods if funds are available.

Nkhata Bay District Coordinator for Family Planning Services, Harvey Thom said the partnership with private clinics has increased the uptake of the modern services in the district.

“Since we entered into agreement with these clinics, we have seen a tremendous improvement in utilization of the services,” he said.

Thom said the reports which we receive from these clinics has shown a great change in access and utilization of the services.

Currently, he said, the DHO entered into agreement with nine private clinics.

Director of Kwidu Community Clinic in Mpamba Nkhata Bay, Lameck Moyo, said more women and girls are coming to his clinic to seek the services.

“Women and girls are now accessing any modern services which are readily available at this clinic,” he said.

Moyo further said there is need for more sensitization to reach out to those living in hard to reach areas.

Moyo however bemoaned the low cost which the clients seeking the services are paying which is as low as K200.

This will affect the sustainability of the clinics and urged the DHO to look into it, he said.

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