A project led by the Center for Communication Programs (CCP) has boosted the number of women who adopt modern contraception after giving birth by more than seven-fold from April 2018 to April 2019 in 40 private facilities in Lagos targeted in a pilot project. CCP is based at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
Through a combination of strategies, the Post-Pregnancy Family Planning project aims to help women understand how soon after birth they can become pregnant – and what their modern family planning options are. The focus is on women who get prenatal care and deliver their babies in private health facilities. In Lagos, Nigeria’s largest city with over 23 million residents, most women give birth in one of the thousands of private health facilities that thrive in the city. But few of those facilities were offering family planning services. Many women with infants were at risk of getting pregnant with the next child before they were ready.
When pregnant women visit the clinic, counselors explain why post-pregnancy family planning is so crucial to their well-being and that of her child. Health workers even go to new mothers’ rooms soon after delivery to pitch the idea again. Materials are available in clinics’ waiting areas.
The strategies are now being scaled up to an additional 200 private clinics over the next year. The project is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Merck for Mothers.Friday Letter Submission, Publish on July 19