Kenyan midwives revitalize postpartum care

Rosemary Kamunya, JHPIEGO
Nancy Koskei, JHPIEGO - Kenya Office
Elaine Roman, JHPIEGO - Kenya Office
Holly Blanchard, JHPIEGO
Angela Nashmercado, JHPIEGO

The postpartum period represents an important opportunity for providing family planning services. A recent review of the Kenyan DHS 2003 data for women in the first year postpartum found that nearly 70% had unmet need for family planning. An initiative aimed at strengthening postpartum care, ‘focused postpartum care’ is being implemented in Embu District in Kenya. Focused postpartum care, aims to improve essential maternal and neonatal care, and promotes early and exclusive breastfeeding. Lactational amenorrhea method, other modern methods compatible with breastfeeding, return to fertility and benefits of healthy timing and spacing comprise the essence of postpartum family planning. Operations research is being carried out to evaluate the feasibility and effectiveness of the work. Initial observations of the initiative are encouraging. The results of the research will be presented to stakeholders in Kenya and neighboring countries, for review and consideration as a best practice for sustaining, scaling up and replication.

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Presented in Session 55: Family Planning in Kenya