UK ‘s Mitchell visits Malawi family planning clinics

Britain’s government says it has noted with delight that Malawian women are able to make informed  decisions on family planning methods of their choice.

International Development Secretary Andrew Mitchell told journalists on Thursday immediately after touring  sexual health and family planning services  clinic –  Banja la Mtsogolo (BLM) at Chilomoni township in Malawi’s commercial city Blantyre.

Mitchell said it is “very hard choice to make in the developing world considering the cultural norms that are there.”

He confirmed that London  through the Department for International Development (DFID),  has pumped  ₤12 milion (about K5 billion) as part of its commitment to a six- year (2009-2015) partnership with BLM.

Mitchell: Malawi women making informed decisions

Mitchell also visited Blue Star Clinic in Chilomoni, a social franchising project launched in 2008 between BLM and small private clinics in urban and peri-urban areas to enhance women’s access to high quality family planning and post-abortion care at a marginal fee.

He then privately visited Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH)’s One Stop Centre Crisis Centre.

BLM information for 2011 shows that over 250,000 women and men received family planning services, a figure that is expected to double  in the next five years.

“The organization has also contributed  eight percentages to the contraceptive prevalence rate in Malawi,” reads the leaflet in part.

Mitchell ended his three day visit to Malawi on Friday where he came to meet with President Joyce Banda and the country’s financial officials for detailed discussions on how Britain can provide assistance.

Earlier this month, Britain — a former ruler of Malawi — pledged 20 million pounds ($32 million) to help stabilize the Malawian economy and 10 million pounds for the country’s health system.

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