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The @USAID-funded @fistulacare project takes a diverse approach to reducing barriers to fistula care. A key component of preventing fistula is expanding access to high-quality sexual and reproductive health services.

➡️Learn more: http://bit.ly/FCPlus-Webinar

#IWD2021 @USAIDGH

EngenderHealth supports capacity building & GBV awareness creation at Arbaminch Hospital, an integrated care center for GBV screening, counseling, treatment, and legal aid in Ethiopia. We were honored to host state officials to learn about successes & challenges in this model.

Yesterday, you heard about fistula from the @USAID-funded @fistulacare Plus project. To learn about how we’ve worked with partners to prevent & treat fistula over 15 years, join @fistulacare & @usaidGH for “Towards a Fistula-Free Future” on March 8!

➡️http://bit.ly/FCPlus-Webinar

Warmest congratulations to Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the new U.S. Ambassador to the @UN. We @UNFPA wish you every success and look forward to working with you to protect the health and advance the rights of women and girls around the world. @LindaT_G @USUN

http://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/23/us/politics/linda-thomas-greenfield-ambassador-united-nations.html

Also, mark your calendars for March 8, 2021! We are hosting a virtual event on #InternationalWomensDay entitled, “Towards a Fistula-Free Future: 15 Years of Breakthroughs and Program Impact.” Register today: http://bit.ly/FCPlus-Webinar

Thanks everyone! The FC+ website is a great place to start for more information and resources on fistula prevention and treatment, including research results, project reports, and stories from providers and clients. http://bit.ly/fistularesources https://twitter.com/EngenderHealth/status/1364608432880443393

Obstetric fistula is a beacon of inequality, as it occurs where women are already living with limited resources and access to healthcare. Additionally, once fistula occurs, women often face significant stigma and isolation which can impact their social and economic wellbeing. https://twitter.com/EngenderHealth/status/1364605591528886273

We also must strengthen the healthcare workforce, particularly by supporting high-quality surgical training to ensure women receive quality c-sections when needed–a focus of the new @USAID_MOMENTUM Safe Surgery in Family Planning & Obstetrics project led by @EngenderHealth.

Great question! To truly #EndFistula, we must prevent new cases while treating existing ones. Some keys to fistula prevention are girls’ education, addressing poverty, delaying marriage age, access to sexual & repro healthcare, and timely & high-quality emergency obstetric care. https://twitter.com/EngenderHealth/status/1364605397756182530

Yes. Depending on severity, there are surgical & non-surgical treatment options. The Fistula Care Plus (FC+) project works to strengthen the entire continuum of care–from prevention to fistula diagnosis, safe surgical repair, rehabilitation, & reintegration back to her community. https://twitter.com/EngenderHealth/status/1364605303858282499

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Uganda

A country of 38 million in 2014, Uganda has one of the highest total fertility rates in the world (6.2 lifetime births per woman). Despite progress over the last decade, maternal mortality remains high, at 310 deaths per 100,000 live births, well above the 2015 target of 150 per 100,000 set by the government and the United Nations. Limited access to quality maternal care continues to put Ugandan women at risk of pregnancy-related disabilities, such as obstetric fistula, a vaginal injury usually caused by prolonged labor without timely medical attention. Many women are unaware that obstetric fistula can often be repaired, which would vastly improve their lives.

Since 2004, EngenderHealth has partnered with the Ugandan Ministry of Health in their health centers and hospitals to build awareness of obstetric fistula and to support its prevention, treatment, and repair. From 2004 to 2013, we trained 26 doctors and 761 nurses to perform fistula repair surgery and supported a total of 3,534 surgeries. On the prevention side, EngenderHealth greatly improved the quality of obstetric care and family planning services, both of which can prevent obstetric fistula from occurring.

Our work today continues to focus on strengthening fistula prevention and treatment in Uganda with the Fistula Care Plus project. We are expanding efforts to build community awareness, increasing our emphasis on the integration of family planning services with fistula and maternal health care, and addressing the enormous backlog of women awaiting life-altering fistula repair.

Our family planning work spans decades of support for capacity building in clinical methods of contraception, quality improvement approaches, and integration of family planning with HIV and AIDs prevention and treatment. The Expand Family Planning (ExpandFP) project, funded by The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation from 2013 to 2017, supported two districts (Masaka and Hoima) to improve access to, quality of, and choice of contraceptive methods. The project worked extensively with seven health facilities in the two districts to build the capacity of service providers in all methods of family planning, including long-acting reversible methods (intrauterine devices [IUDs] and hormonal implants) and permanent methods for women and men. ExpandFP supported the training of more than 400 individual providers, supervisors, and other staff/volunteers (while simultaneously reinforcing trainers’ skills). The project also worked with youth peer educators to provide facility- and community-based youth-friendly health services. Through its support to these facilities, youth activities, and outreach services to an additional 38 more rural facilities and 49 community sites, ExpandFP supported the provision of nearly 45,000 family planning services. At the national level, EngenderHealth supports the Uganda Ministry of Health in program planning to improve access to family planning and update national training manuals.

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