Through the Expand Family Planning (ExpandFP) Project, EngenderHealth supported ministries of health in resource-constrained countries to ensure clients’ full, free, and informed choice of family planning (FP), while expanding the availability and use of long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs). Funded by The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the project ran from 2013 to 2018 in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Uganda, and Tanzania. The project assisted those countries’ health care systems and advanced global learning through research and dissemination of evidence.
Funds for Africa’s work supported the global FP2020 partnership’s goal of providing FP information and contraceptives to an additional 120 million women and girls in the world’s poorest countries by 2025. In collaboration with local governments, ExpandFP focused on building the capacity of public-sector health facilities to offer high-quality FP information and services for women and adolescent girls. Capacity building for providers and supervisors, quality improvement of client counseling and clinic techniques, community information and services, and multiple service delivery approaches were the cornerstones of our work. For example, the project supported ministries of health in scaling up FP services by improving daily service quality at health clinics, sponsoring special FP days, and employing mobile outreach approaches to reach the most remote, vulnerable populations. ExpandFP ensured that a range of contraceptive methods and information were available; that clients’ rights and choices were assured; that medical follow-up care was offered; and that access to implant and intrauterine device (IUD) removal services was in place. Quality assurance and quality improvement initiatives were part of all project activities.
Among many things, ExpandFP supported training for 886 individuals, including FP counselors, supervisors, managers, and support personnel across all three countries. Further, through support to multiple service delivery modalities in each country, the project supported the provision of more than 300,000 modern FP methods and implant and IUD removals to clients.