COVID-19 lockdown necessitated increase in family planning centres in Niger – State govt

2 months ago 29

Niger State Government has claimed the COVID-19 lockdown increased the demands for family planning services among families as couples were forced to stay at home.

He said family planning centres in the state increased from 222 to 527 during the period to ensure that services were provided for families.

Executive Director, Niger State Primary Health Care Development Agency, NSPHCDA, Dr Ahmed Dangana disclosed this at an Advanced Family Planning workshop for journalists.

He said the state government is currently making efforts to increase the number of centres to reach more people needing services.

The ED also lamented the 7.5% usage of family planning contraceptives in the state for both traditional and modern methods, saying out of 100 women, only about seven access the service.

He identified lack of access to FP commodities, lack of awareness, gender and socio-cultural norms, religious beliefs as some of the barriers to family planning in the state.

However, Dangana revealed that the highest number of those seeking FP services were the educated people as compared to the uneducated noting the need for more Media and CSO enlightenment on FP advantages, prospects and disabusing the minds of people on misconceptions.

He further disclosed that there was no dedicated budget on FP for the Agency as it is embedded into the activities of the state ministry for Health, but gets support from partnerships with UNICEF and other organizations.

Also, the state Assistant Coordinator of the Family Planning Unit, Ahmed Abdul said no fewer than 123 million women across the world were in need of FP, but have no access to the services.

He also lamented that currently, only 3% of uneducated persons seek family planning services as against 37% of educated persons.

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