From Paul Osuyi, Asaba
Experts in reproductive health have advised women to always take the initiative to introduce family planning matters at home.
The experts who spoke at a roundtable in Asaba, Delta State, insisted that family planning in any marriage can never be successful women.
The roundtable discourse with the topic: ‘The Role of Women in Family Planning at the Wake of COVID-19 Pandemic’ was organised by a media advocacy group as part of celebrations of women in the society.
Two discussants at the forum including
Mrs. Patience Abudu of the Family Planning Clinic, Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Asaba and Mrs. Patience Eke of the Delta State Primary Health Care Development Agency, opined that women have a lot to do for family planning to be successful.
Mrs. Eke specifically said adopting family planning helps families to live happily and healthy.
“A woman has a lot of roles to play in family planning as the one who bears the burden of childbearing and the manager of the family.
“She needs to stay alive during and after childbearing to manage the home.
“Yes, some men initiate the need to take up family planning but without the women, it will not be successful.
“I believe women had to initiate it and ensure they carry their husbands along and if the man agrees, they should seek genuine family planning centres to avoid falling into the hands of quacks,” Eke said.
Although she admitted that family planning methods have side effects, such effects, she said we’re not deadly, adding that the up taker must have the determination to sustain it.
She said people react to family planning methods differently depending on body make-up, maintaining that it does not make women childless nor infertile.
Giving a statistics of those who sought family planning at Asaba FMC during the COVID-19 induced lockdown last year, Mrs. Patience Abudu said there was an increased number of new acceptors during the period.
Abudu noted the lockdown was a trying and tough period for many families and this forced them to toe the precaution line to avoid unwanted pregnancies and to ensure financial discipline.
According to her, “women are the home managers and must drive the process of family planning in the home.
“Family planning ensures discipline and proper child spacing in the family to avoid unwanted pregnancies.
“Many families have become aware, sought and taken up family planning at the FMC Asaba facility before now.
“But at the advent of COVID-19 pandemic and the associated economic challenges, the acceptors of family planning increased at the facility.
“In April 2020, we recorded about 150 clients but following the lockdown and the intimacy associated with it, many families called to take up family planning.
“So, we recorded programme uptake of 187 in May, it dropped to 177 in June, but rose to 192 in July at the FMC, Asaba facility alone.”
She noted that the modern family planning methods had provided succor for every family to plan and ensure proper child spacing and healthy living by adopting perfect methods that work for the family.
According to Abudu, the urban residents are already sensitised on the need to plan their families to live a happy and healthy life.
“The challenge is on how to take the advocacy to the rural communities to educate the people, particularly the women, to enable them do the needful to help themselves,” she added.