India to host ‘Vasectomy Fortnight’

17th November: To Promotion of Male Participation in Family Planning and Spreads awareness about Vasectomy Government of India is hosting Vasectomy Fortnight  from 21st November to 4th December 2017.

Globally men’s involvement in family planning is dismally poor. In some countries, they have altogether give up on promoting family planning among men.  In India, vasectomy prevalence varies greatly from one state to another, ranging from a high of 6.3% in Himachal Pradesh to a low of less than 0.05% in Mizoram and Nagaland. According to the India 2007-2008 District Level Household Survey, the overall rate is 1.1.

Dr. Joe Thomas, the executive Director of Partners in Population and Development in a letter to the Ministry of Health and Social welfare, Government of India congratulated the government on it’s effort towards engaging men in family planning. “A voluntary and well informed involvement of men in reproductive health issues is vital for the success of national family planning and reproductive health programs” Dr Thomas emphasized.

He also congratulated Smt. Vandana Gurnani, Jt. Secretary for taking the leading in his initiative.

As part of the preparation towards ‘Vasectomy Fortnight’ Ministry of Health and Family Welfare organized a one-day national workshop on the promotion of male participation in family planning.
Smt. Vandana Gurnani, Jt. Secretary inaugurated this  workshop, which highlighted concrete strategies to understand and incorporate the male perspective and male needs in the same way as attention is given to women’s perspectives and needs. The Health Ministry through its sustained family planning efforts, aims to increase male participation in family planning, with continued emphasis on delivering assured services, generating demand and bridging supply gaps.

The workshop also saw the launch of the Family Planning Logistics Management Information System (FP-LMIS) manual. The FP-LMIS software was developed to facilitate the management and distribution of contraceptives and is designed to provide robust information on the demand and distribution of contraceptives to health facilities and ASHAs and strengthen supply chain management. It is intended to be a decision-making tool for policy makers, program managers and logistics personnel to monitor and manage the flow of contraceptive supplies, in order to reduce stockouts and overstocks, and improve the program’s effectiveness and contraceptive security.

Male participation in improving the reproductive health of couples is crucial. While the permanent methods of contraception have traditionally found more acceptances in India, the maximum numbers of acceptors are women.

The World Vasectomy Day is an event intended to raise global awareness on Vasectomy. The National Workshop today is also a precursor and curtain raiser to the upcoming Vasectomy Fortnight across States. All states/UTs across India will observe a dedicated ‘Vasectomy Fortnight’ from 21st November to 4th December 2017 with commensurate publicity whereby quality male sterilization services would be provided to clients at public health facilities.

The observation of a dedicated fortnight is intended to galvanize awareness on male sterilization and thereby improve its acceptance in the community. The Vasectomy Fortnight will be observed up to the block level with focus on Family Planning service delivery along with IEC & advocacy.

The theme of the ‘Vasectomy Fortnight 2017’ reminds men’s responsibility to contribute to the family planning.  The observation of the Vasectomy Fortnight 2017 will be conducted in two phases:

  1. Mobilization phase (21st Nov – 27th Nov) – This fortnight is utilised for awareness generation on the benefits of male contraception. IEC, especially on male participation in Family Planning and addressing various myths associated with it, will be available across public and accredited health care facilities.
  2. Service delivery phase (28th Nov – 4th Dec) – In addition to awareness generation, all districts and blocks will organise for provision of male sterilization services in this dedicated fortnight.

Male participation in adoption of family planning has been a challenge along with other numerous challenges that must still be overcome, particularly in terms of raising public awareness around promoting and male engagement in family planning services. The promotion of male participation is vital to the success of the Family Planning programme.

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