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Supply-level measures to increase uptake of family planning services in Niger: the effectiveness of improving responsiveness

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OBJECTIVE To show that low-cost attitudinal, structural and procedural changes aimed at improving responsiveness to patients have the potential to increase uptake of family planning (FP) even among populations considered reluctant to do so by health personnel.

METHODS Intervention study with before–after comparison of contraceptive acceptance, couple-years of protection (CYP) and an `index of contraceptive uptake' (IUC) in rural health centres in Niger. The intervention consists of a package of instructions to actively propose family planning, integrated within curative and under-fives consultations, coupled with measures to increase the health centres' responsiveness to their clients.

RESULTS Implementation of the intervention package was followed by marked increases in family planning uptake.

CONCLUSION Health services in Niger present an untapped potential for improving family planning through low-cost supply-side measures.
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Keywords: Niger; family planning; integration; performance; quality of care; responsiveness; utilization

Document Type: Original Article

Affiliations: 1: Alafia Project, Niamey, Niger, 2: Department of Public Health, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium

Publication date: 2002-04-01

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