Cross River has become the latest to domesticate the National Family Planning Guidelines, with the State Government pledging commitment to effective implementation of the policy.
The commitment was made by the State Commissioner for Health, Dr Henry Egbe Ayuk, during a one-day event to formally launch the National Guidelines for State-Funded Procurement of Family Planning Commodities, in Calabar.
The State Health Commissioner pledged the present administration’s commitment to bridge the state’s funding gap in the procurement of Family Planning Commodities.
Dr Ayuk also informed that the State would strengthen its advocacy on family planning, especially in more remote parts of the State in order to enhance the effective implementation of the policy.
He commended the contributors to the development of the National guidelines for Family planning and urged that besides the state committing to bridge the funding gap, legislators at both the state and national levels can also capture procurement of family planning commodities as part of constituency project outreach.
Also speaking at the event, a representative of the Wife of the State Governor, Rev. Eyoawan Otu, Mr Jeffrey Adamade, disclosed that thousands of women across the State have been given delivery kits for pregnant women, free of charge.
The State Family Planning coordinator, Lucy Enakirehi noted that over the years, “the federal government of Nigeria supported by donor agencies such as the United Nations Population Fund has been ensuring the procurement of family planning commodities to all the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, but 3 years ago, it became obvious that there was fatigue; donor fatigue and the next step was for stakeholders to get the message right down that the donors alone can’t keep doing it for us.
“The message is that sub-nationals such as states should commit themselves to the funding of family planning procurement just as Cross River State has done today. Over the years it has been only the federal government with support from the United Nations Population Fund that family planning procurement done for all 36 states. We had been partners dependent. At a point, the supplies started dwindling, so the state commitment would breach the gap of both the supplies and the distribution.
“Going forward, it means the Cross River State government will contribute to the national basket fund at the federal level, so when procurement is done centrally with support from UNFPA, the State will have adequate supplies to meet its demands.
“Family planning commodities covered by the guidelines include condoms, both for males and females, progestin-only Contraceptive pills, combined oral contraceptive pills, injectable contraceptives (DMPA IM/SC), Contraceptive implants (Etonogestrel and Levonorgestrel implants), Intra-Uterine Devices (Copper-T and LNG Hormonal –IUD), Cycle Beads and other new methods approved by the Federal Ministry of Health.”