Bangladesh is one of the world's most densely populated countries. Although social norms favor early marriages, the government is committed to improving women's status as well as expanding family planning options. Over the years, Bangladesh has emerged as one of the world's successes in terms of lowering fertility and improving living standards for women. Yet, the country is still straining from a large and growing population.
Since 1974, EngenderHealth's work in Bangladesh has helped expand the availability, quality, and use of reproductive health care services. Our current activities focus on:
- Expanding family planning
- Preventing post-partum hemorrhage
- Preventing and treating obstetric fistula
Expanding Family Planning and LA/PMs
EngenderHealth implements the Mayer Hashi Project in Bangladesh. The project, which means "Smiling Mother" in Bengali, aims to address the need for family planning through expanding contraceptive choices and services. Supported by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the Mayer Hashi Project works to improve women's health by increasing awareness of and access to long-acting and permanent methods of family planning (LA/PMs), such as implants, IUDs, and male and female sterilization.
Preventing Postpartum Hemorrhage
The Mayer Hashi Project also works to prevent postpartum hemorrhage, the number one cause of maternal mortality in Bangladesh. Mayer Hashi trains health care workers to prevent postpartum hemorrhage during facility deliveries, and training field workers to distribute of the lifesaving drug misoprostol, to reach the 85% of Bengali women who give birth at home without skilled attendants.
Preventing and Treating Obstetric Fistula
EngenderHealth promotes efforts to prevent and treat obstetric fistula in Bangladesh through the Fistula Care Project. Our efforts include:
- Providing technical assistance to four large private hospitals: LAMB Hospital in Dinajpur, Ad-din Hospital in Dhaka and Jessore, and Kumudini Hospital in Tangail
- Upgrading instruments and equipment
- Training doctors and nurses in fistula repair and postoperative care, comprehensive case management, and counseling
- Creating community awareness to ensure fistula prevention
- Linking fistula services with family planning and emergency obstetric care