Background To assess the strength of implementation of family planning programs targeting youth (15-24) in Malawi with a specific focus on youth and the Youth-Friendly Health Services program Methods We conducted 9781 mobile phone interviews with facility in-Charge Nurses and health workers (health facility workers, health surveillance assistants [HSAs] and community-based distribution agent [CBDAs]) who provide family planning (FP) services across the 28 districts. Responses were entered in tablet using Open Data Kit. They were summarized and presented using R, Stata (College Station, TX, USA), StatsReport (JHU, Baltimore, MD, USA) and ArcView GIS (ESRI, Redlands, CA, USA). Results Availability of key products was a challenge across all health worker types as only 39% of health facilities, 29% of HSAs and 45% of CBDAs had all the FP methods they are supposed to provide on the day of the interview. About 50% of health workers were supervised within past 90 days preceding the study. Despite most facilities saying that they provide youth friendly health services, youth-specific FP guidelines or protocols were not available in 43% of facilities that provide these services and only 33% of facilities had special rooms and 58% have special days for youth. Conclusions The commodity supply system needs to ensure that all facilities and workers have a consistent supply of all contraceptive methods. Government and program implementers should ensure availability of all FP guidelines and information, education, communication materials at all service delivery points and facilitate creation of special rooms or days for youth.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health Policy
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health