By Gabriel Olawale
The Lagos State Government has called for increased participation of private health facilities in family planning services to enable the state achieved a target of 74 percent contraceptive prevalence rate, CPR, by 2020.
Speaking during a media roundtable themed, “ANC, Immunization, Delivery Points as Catalyst to Improved Family Planning Uptake”, the State Reproductive Health and Family Planning Coordinator, Dr Saidat Okaga said presently, the state CPR is 26 percent and is expected to reach 74 percent by 2020.
“In Lagos State, more than 60 per cent of healthcare services are being rendered by private health facilities but to our displeasure, data shows that only 13 percent of them actually involve in family planning services.
“Some private facilities attribute their lack of involvement to low family planning client volumes, low demand for contraceptives and little desire to use them post-pregnancy.
“Inability to purchase commodities in bulk at affordable price, Lack of profitability and lack of incentive to providers of family planning counselling and services especially to young post-pregnancy women.
Speaking at the event organised by DevComs in collaboration with the Nigerian Urban Reproductive Health Initiative, NURHI2, Okaga who is also Director in the Directorate of Family Health and Nutrition in Lagos, said the state is working towards ensuring that both state and private providers work hand-in-hand to ensure the actualization of 74 percent CPR by 2020.
On her part, Team Leader, NURHI 2 Post Pregnancy Family Planning Project, Dr Taiwo Johnson, urged women to embrace post pregnancy family planning even as she explained that it help to prevent the high risk of unintended and closely spaced pregnancies during the first year following childbirth.
“It is one of the highest impact interventions to avoid increased risk of premature birth, low birth weight, fetal and neonatal death, and adverse maternal health outcomes. More importantly, it has the potential to protect and empower women at a crucial time in their lives, establish healthy birth spacing practices, and reduce maternal and child morbidity and mortality. It is a key investment to fulfil the FP2020 commitments and SDGs.”
She however urged the health care providers to take advantage of the antenatal and immunisation period to engage husbands and expectant mothers on the importance of family planning.