Examining the Comprehensive Integration of Family Planning Services Into General Health Care in Rwanda

Hilary Schwandt, Western Washington University
Adriana Scanteianu , Rutgers University
Angel Boulware, Spelman College
Julia Corey, Wheaton College
Ana Herrera, Northwest Vista Community College
Ethan Hudler, Whatcom Community College
Claudette Imbabazi, INES-Ruhengeri – Institute of Applied Sciences
Ilia King, Xavier University
Jessica Linus, University of Maryland, Baltimore County
Innocent Manzi, INES-Ruhengeri – Institute of Applied Sciences
Maddie Merritt, Western Washington University
Lyn Mezier, State University of New York at Oswego (SUNY)
Abigail Miller, Western Washington University
Haley Morris, Western Oregon University
Dieudonne Musemakweli, INES-Ruhengeri – Institute of Applied Sciences
Uwase Musekura, Eastern Oregon University
Divine Mutuyimana, INES-Ruhengeri – Institute of Applied Sciences
Chimene Ntakarutimana, University of Kentucky
Nrali Patel, Arcadia University
Biganette-Evidente Shemeza, INES-Ruhengeri – Institute of Applied Sciences
Madi Stapleton, Western Washington University
Gi'Anna Sterling-Donaldson, Drexel University
Chantal Umutoni, INES-Ruhengeri – Institute of Applied Sciences
Liz Uwera, INES-Ruhengeri – Institute of Applied Sciences
Madeline Zeiler, Western Washington University
Seth L. Feinberg, Western Washington University

Family planning (FP) is vital to achieving sustainable communities, and the lack of successful FP programs in sub-Saharan Africa has resulted in high fertility rates that pose health risks and impede economic growth. However, Rwanda’s fertility rate is low and its contraceptive usage rate has tripled since 2005. Our research indicates that integration of FP services into routine health care is crucial to Rwanda’s success. Qualitative data wereas collected from focus group discussions with FP providers and interviews with FP users from in 2018Rwanda’s Musanze and Nyamasheke. Results indicate a sequence of FP health service integration: women were informed about contraceptive methods during pregnancy and initiated method use during started using a method child vaccinations. FP discussions were also incorporated into children’s weight checks with community health workers. The comprehensive integration of family planning across services may explain much of the extraordinary increase in Rwanda’s contraceptive usage, and has applications in increasing FP use throughout sub-Saharan Africa.

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 Presented in Session 242. Challenges in Operationalizing Population and Reproductive Health Policies and Programs