The private sector in Nepal is an important source of short-acting reversible contraceptives. It represents a critical opportunity to increase contraceptive access and choice. The Government of Nepal (GON) has emphasized the importance of strengthening social marketing and the private sector (National Family Planning Costed Implementation Plan 2015–2020). Nepal CRS Company (CRS) has introduced contraceptive products and services in the country for almost 50 years. Recent innovations in social marketing, through the use of marketing methods, intend to bring about social and behavioral change to improve citizens' quality of life.
In July 2021, USAID’s Research for Scalable Solutions (R4S) project, led by FHI 360, released the Drug Shop Operators' Provision of Injectable Contraception manual. The handbook shows how drug shop operators can coordinate with the public health system to safely provide an expanded method mix that includes injectables, as well as training for clients on self-injection. The handbook was developed in Uganda in partnership with the National Drug Shop Task Team but can be adapted to various contexts in Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. Knowledge SUCCESS’ contibuting writer Brian Mutebi talked to Fredrick Mubiru, Family Planning Technical Advisor at FHI 360 and one of the key resource persons involved in the development of the handbook, about its significance and why people should use it.
Working alongside family planning advocates, Jhpiego Kenya applied the nine-step SMART advocacy approach to engage stakeholders in the creation of a new pharmacist training package. The updated curriculum includes that includes instruction on providing contraceptive injectables DMPA-IM and DMPA-SC.
When public health officials make decisions, they are faced with competing demands on financial resources, conflicting interests, and the imperative to meet national health goals. Decision-makers need tools to help them establish a healthy market, particularly in resource-constrained settings. SHOPS Plus found this to be the case in a recent activity in Tanzania, where their ultimate goal was to engage all the actors in Tanzania’s health market, public and private, to ensure proper targeting of investments and meet the health needs of all Tanzanians.
The chronicle of Malawi’s rapid, efficient introduction of self-injected subcutaneous DMPA (DMPA-SC) into the method mix is a model of teamwork and coordination. Although this process typically takes about 10 years, Malawi achieved it in fewer than three. Self-injected DMPA-SC epitomizes the ideal of self-care by empowering women to learn how to inject themselves, and has the added benefit of helping clients avoid busy clinics during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Injectables are the most popular family planning method in Uganda but, until recently, were offered only by community health workers and at health facilities and hospitals. In contrast, the country’s 10,000 drug shops, which provide greater access in hard-to-reach rural areas, were authorized to supply only short-acting, nonprescription methods. FHI 360 supported the government of Uganda in training drug shop operators to offer injectables as well.