In clinics, communities, and villages, thousands of health workers have been trained to safely administer DMPA-SC—and support women learning to self-inject.
Country partners have gained significant experience and learning about health worker training and supervision—including how to effectively begin offering a new contraceptive method within the context of informed choice. DMPA-SC training materials comprise a range of traditional and digital resources, including presentation slides, videos, an online training course, and job aids that can be customized for the varying needs of family planning training programs.
Using eLearning to train health workers on family planning counseling can be an effective training approach, particularly when carefully planned and coordinated to maximize the benefits. On August 26, 2021, the DMPA-SC Access Collaborative hosted this webinar on eLearning for health workers learning to counsel clients on DMPA-SC including self-injection in Senegal and Uganda. During 2019-2020, this approach was launched and evaluated in four regions of Senegal and four districts in Uganda.
The findings and recommendations from the experiences in Senegal and Uganda may offer lessons for other countries wishing to implement digital learning approaches. The webinar presenters raised important considerations about stakeholder coordination, internet and technology access, eLearning platforms, establishing training targets, training content, and the important role of post-training supervision.
Supportive supervision plays a critical role to ensure high-performing health workers have the appropriate knowledge, skills, and motivation in order to deliver quality family planning (FP) services and informed choice counseling. This package includes three supportive supervision tools that can be used by regional or district health teams when conducting supervision visits at health facilities that offer FP services:
Supportive supervision checklist to assess provision of family planning counseling
Observation checklist to assess health workers counseling clients on DMPA-SC self-injection
Remote supervision of family planning providers (includes family planning and self-injection)
Tools #1 and #2 can be used together or separately, depending on whether or not the supervision visits include follow-up with providers recently trained to counsel clients on DMPA-SC self-injection.
Tool #3 is intended for use in situations where in-person supervision is not possible; the supervision exercise can be conducted through phone or video. This tool includes guidance and instructions for supervisors who plan to conduct supervision remotely.
The tools are intended to serve as guides and can be adapted for specific settings as needed. For more information, contact FPoptions@path.org.
With growing evidence that technologies can yield time and resource efficiencies and improve quality of care—resulting in better patient outcomes—in 2019 the World Health Organization (WHO) issued recommendations for digital interventions for health systems strengthening. This brief uses the WHO definition of digital health from the draft Global Strategy on Digital Health 2020-2024: “the field of knowledge and practice associated with the development and use of digital technologies to improve health.” The recommendations include interventions in mHealth (medical and public health practice supported by mobile devices) and eHealth (the use of information and communication technologies for health), with the most recent evidence largely focused on mHealth.
The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically affected the capacity of organisations to train health providers, jeopardising their ability to maintain SRH (sexual and reproductive health) services for women and girls. Due to risk of infection, movement restrictions and the diversion of medical personnel and resources away from essential services, traditional in-person trainings and assessments are no longer feasible. This learning brief summarises learning on approaches to remote training of health workers in developing countries.
By leveraging digital training tools, family planning programs can integrate new approaches that help reduce the costs, time, and inconvenience associated with traditional classroom training. The PATH-JSI Access Collaborative has recently developed digital training resources for health workers and clients learning to administer DMPA-SC.
A 10-lesson DMPA-SC eLearning course for health workers is available for free in English and French and can be taken on computer or mobile device with internet access. Content includes an emphasis on informed choice counseling, new lessons on calculating the injection date and conducting follow-up visits, and updated information on training clients to self-inject.
In addition to the eLearning course, PATH and JSI have developed short 5- to 7-minute DMPA-SC training videos for both self-injection clients and health workers. Available in English and French, the videos can be translated or adapted to fit in program contexts.
If you are interested in introducing DMPA-SC digital training approaches in your program, please contact the Access Collaborative at FPoptions@path.org.
The Task Sharing Strategic Planning Guide is intended to lead program managers, planners, and policymakers through a strategic process to determine if and how task sharing family planning (FP) services can be used to help achieve development goals. Task sharing is defined as the systematic redistribution of family planning services, including counseling and provision of contraceptive methods, to expand the range of health workers who can deliver services (WHO, 2017). Task sharing is a safe, effective, and efficient means to improve access to voluntary sexual and reproductive health services and reach national FP goals.
This guideline presents recommendations based on a critical evaluation of the evidence on emerging digital health interventions that are contributing to health system improvements, based on an assessment of the benefits, harms, acceptability, feasibility, resource use and equity considerations.
The DMPA/NET-EN checklist consists of questions designed to identify medical conditions that would prevent safe DMPA/NET-EN use or require further screening and assess whether a client might be pregnant. It also provides guidance and directions based on clients’ responses.
This training module is part of a World Health Organization series of modules on immunization training. Supportive supervision involves supervisors and health workers working together to solve problems and improve performance. The module outlines key steps and practical implementation strategies.