FAMILY PLANNING CONVERGENCE PROGRAM: TEAMING UP FOR BETTER RESULTS
The Family Planning (FP) Convergence Program is being implemented in Bihar in partnership with the State Health Society (SHS) and JEEViKA, with the technical support from PCI. As part of the government’s FP program, on the 21st of every month, a Family Planning Day has been planned at district and block level in Aurangabad. On this day, necessary information with regards to importance of FP and methods of contraception as well as counselling services are provided to young eligible couples.
During the regular interaction of PCI, JEEViKA and Health team, it was realized that the FP day observed at the Primary Health Centres could be the right occasion to connect with young couples to impart information about FP methods. However, people were still not visiting the facility to get the necessary information. Hence, in December 2022 the team decided to start a community outreach activity to help increase this number. This thought was shared with the HN Manager, who discussed the possibility with Block Project Manager and District Project Manager of JEEViKA, who further shared this with the Additional Chief Medical Officer and Civil Surgeon (CS). The CS issued letters to all Medical Officers In Charge of PHCs to make the necessary arrangements. This process also involved the leaders of Panchayat Raj Institutions. JEEViKA and Health Department planned to organize an orientation day at Cluster Level Federation level, a day prior to FP day, as a means of creating awareness around the FP Day and the facilities available at the tertiary level and to motivate women to use the services offered on FP day. The MOICs of Community Health Centres (CHCs) of both intervention blocks in Aurangabad (Obra and Barun) were also asked to ensure the presence of ASHA and ANM with FP products, and to provide condom boxes for each CLF. There is also a plan to engage with the male population in the eligible couples on FP issues.
At the program, the MOIC of CHC Barun, BHM, BCM, DCM, ANM, ASHA, Asha Facilitator, Health Nutrition Manager of JEEViKA, BPM Barun and PCI Program Manager (FP Convergence) worked in sync. The ANM and ASHA demonstrated temporary FP methods to the women and informed them about the services and facilities available on FP Day. On the first FP Day, 90 boxes of condoms, with 5 condoms each, were distributed in Obra block across 3 CLFs and 45 boxes were distributed in 1 CLF in Barun block in no time.
At CLF level, the master bookkeeper has been assigned the duty to keep an account of the stock, and to cater to the demand. The DPM follows up to ensure that there is no shortage.
At the state level, PCI is now an active partner of SHS for FP and shares programmatic and policy-related issues emerging from the field with the government.
Anila Samuel, Program Manager – Family Planning
Ronnie Clive Francis, Manager – Communications & Knowledge Management
Prasann Thatte, Director, Knowledge Management