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  1. 1
    Peer Reviewed

    Ruling out pregnancy among family planning clients: the impact of a checklist in three countries.

    Stanback J; Diabate F; Dieng T; de Morales TD; Cummings S

    Studies in Family Planning. 2005 Dec; 36(4):311-315.

    Women in many countries are often denied vital family planning services if they are not menstruating when they present at clinics, for fear that they might be pregnant. A simple checklist based on criteria approved by the World Health Organization has been developed to help providers rule out pregnancy among such clients, but its use is not yet widespread. Researchers in Guatemala, Mali, and Senegal conducted operations research to determine whether a simple, replicable introduction of this checklist improved access to contraceptive services by reducing the proportion of clients denied services. From 2001 to 2003, sociodemographic and service data were collected from 4,823 women from 16 clinics in three countries. In each clinic, data were collected prior to introduction of the checklist and again three to six weeks after the intervention. Among new family planning clients, denial of the desired method due to menstrual status decreased significantly from 16 percent to 2 percent in Guatemala and from 11 percent to 6 percent in Senegal. Multivariate analyses and bivariate analyses of changes within subgroups of nonmenstruating clients confirmed and reinforced these statistically significant findings. In Mali, denial rates were essentially unchanged, but they were low from the start. Where denial of services to nonmenstruating family planning clients was a problem, introduction of the pregnancy checklist significantly reduced denial rates. This simple, inexpensive job aid improves women's access to essential family planning services. (author's)
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  2. 2

    More contraceptives can save lives, UNFPA report says.

    Population 2005. 2002 Mar-Apr; 4(1):12-15.

    In a world where demand for secure reproductive health commodities far exceeds supply, leaving people vulnerable to unwanted pregnancies and diseases, a report from the United Nations Population Fund calls for a secure supply of commodities and effective protection to curb the spread of diseases like HIV/AIDS. The report draws up a "shopping list" of commodities that save lives: pills that allow couples to plan for pregnancy, soap, plastic sheets and razor blades to cut umbilical cords, antiseptics and medical equipment for inserting intrauterine devices, and condoms for protection from HIV/AIDS. Commodity shortages threaten the health and lives of millions in developing countries. Each $1 million shortfall in commodity support for contraceptives means an estimated 360,000 more unwanted pregnancies, 150,000 additional induced abortions, 800 maternal deaths, 11,000 infant deaths and 14,000 additional deaths of children under 5, the report says. Overall, only one third of what the donors promised in Cairo at the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) is available now. Specifically, the shortage in funds to purchase contraceptives is projected to reach hundreds of millions of dollars by 2015 – a shortage so severe that it threatens to reverse or stall the world’s progress in reproductive health and rights. (excerpt)
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