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Introduction of Community-Based Provision of Subcutaneous Depot Medroxyprogesterone Acetate (DMPA-SC) in Benin

Programmatic Results

The Republic of Benin faces high maternal, newborn, and child mortality; low modern contraceptive use; and a critical shortage of health workers. In 2013, the Government of Benin made 3 reproductive health commitments to improve national health indicators, including expanding provision of family planning services at the community level through task sharing. Since 2016, the Advancing Partners & Communities (APC) project has been helping the Benin Ministry of Health (MOH) provide subcutaneous depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA-SC; brand name Sayana Press) through facility-based health care providers and community health workers known as relais communautaires (RCs). DMPA-SC is an easy-to-administer, discreet injectable contraceptive that provides 3 months of protection from pregnancy. Beginning in May 2017, the government introduced DMPA-SC through a phased approach in 10 health zones, which encompassed 149 health centers and 614 villages. Between June 2017 and June 2018, the MOH and APC trained 278 facility-based providers and 917 RCs to provide DMPA-SC, and nearly 11,000 doses were subsequently administered to 7,997 women at facilities and in communities. This article presents findings from an assessment of community-level and health facility service data collected during the first 13 months of DMPA-SC introduction in Benin. Because of this intervention, nearly 35,000 women received family planning counseling and 7,997 women chose DMPA-SC. At the community level, 3,111 DMPA-SC users were first-time users of modern contraception. The initial success of the DMPA-SC rollout in Benin shows promise for helping the country meet its reproductive health commitments.

  • Journal article Global Health: Science and Practice