Uganda short of contraceptives

Thursday August 11 2016

By EMMANUEL AINEBYOONA

KAMPALA- A new report tracking the distribution of contraceptives to health facilities has shown stock outs of short-term family planning aids in the country.
The report indicated that oral contraceptive pills and intrauterine devices (IUDs) were not distributed during the period between July 2015 and July 2016.

This year, the report indicated that emergency contraceptive pills and IUDs had not been delivered at the National Medical Stores. “The main reason for non-distribution is because NMS is stocked out of these commodities,” the report read in part.

Not popular anymore
However, in an interview, Mr Dan Kimosho, the NMS spokesperson, told Daily Monitor that oral contraceptives are no longer a popular family planning method among women and girls.

He said after doing consultation with the Ministry of Health, NMS has decided to concentrate on Depo Provera, an injectable method and implants which are popular among the users.

“It came out strongly that men harass their women who are taking pills and it used to result in some women being battered,” Mr Kimosho said.
The report released by the Partners in Population and Development Africa Regional Office yesterday revealed that 60 per cent of women and girls in Uganda preferred Depo Provera as a contraceptive method of choice.
“It’s not shortage but about government prioritising resources to achieve maximum utilisation,” Ms Kimosho, said, adding that oral contraceptives were going to waste due to expiry.

Budgetary constraints
However, the report produced by Dr Moses Muwonge from Samasha Medical Foundation recommended that government should create a budget of procuring short-term contraceptives.

Dr Muwonge said the country has a deficit of about $5m (Shs16.8) which is required to meet the gaps hampering access to family planning commodities.

“This financial year 2016/2017 we needed about $17m (about Shs57.2b) but government and donors have again committed $13 m (Shs43.8b),” Dr Muwonge explained.

He advised the Ministry of Health and NMS to focus on knowing where there is demand to avoid scenarios of having some health facilities over stocked when others don’t have any commodities.

The family planning focal person at the Ministry of Health, Dr Placid Mihayo, said they are developing sensitisation messages to help women to understand various planning methods.

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