You are here

Mbabane, ESWATINI - The Ministry of Health: Sexual Reproductive Health (SRHU) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), today launched the 3rd Edition of the Eswatini National Family Planning Guidelines.

Sexual and Reproductive Health Manager Ms. Bonisile Nhlabatsi explained that the new guidelines were an important tool for use towards improving the quality of family Planning service delivery in the country as well as the reduction of unmet need for family planning in Eswatini.

“Ensuring that family planning commodities and supplies are not in interrupted at all times and meeting the needs of all sexually active individuals in Eswatini is what the Ministry of Health strives to achieve. We are hoping that these guidelines will move us closer to realizing this mandandate,” Ms. Nhlabatsi stated.

“Investments made towards improving access to essential SRHR services for women and girls are valuable investments for every country. These go a long way in enabling women make informed decisions birth choices – whether to have a child or not, or even when to have the next child,” said Head Office, Ms. Margaret Thwala-Tembe who was represented by Officer-in-Charge, Ms. Thamary Silindza. 

Ms Silindza further implored healthcare workers to follow the guidelines in their daily service provision to improve the quality of family planning services offered to women and girls which she described as a key step in equipping them to reach their full potential.

“Let us meet the needs of our women and girls by ensuring universal access to sexual and reproductive health-care services (including for family planning) and ensure access to quality essential services and elimination of discrimination and violence,” she added.

In presenting the overview of the guidelines, SRH focal Person Mr Mgcineni Ndlangamandla stated that the review was much needed as the last edition was done in 2015. Since then, a lot had happened in the SRH sphere, hence the need for new guidelines.

“This version of guidelines includes readiness for any pandemic or crisis, as we all know that access to essential SRH services should never stop even during pandemics,” Ndlangamandla explained.

The launch was held at Mountain View Hotel and in attendance were key Family Planning stakeholders such as UNAIDS, Population Services International, Elisabeth Glaiser Pediatric AIDS Foundation (EGPAF-ASPIRE), Georgetown University, Good Shepherd Catholic Hospital and ICAP.

In Eswatini, UNFPA is implementing the 7th Country Programme (CP) which aims at reducing preventable institutional maternal mortality by the year 2025. The utilization of these new guidelines will would be key in the reduction of unintended pregnancies, poorly spaced births and teenage pregnancies which mostly result in pregnancy complications which may lead to loss of life.