TCI/INSPIRE Partnership Maximizes Program Synergies to Advance Family Planning Integration in Francophone West Africa

Apr 23, 2024

Written by Fatimata Sow

TCI/INSPIRE Partnership Maximizes Program Synergies to Advance Family Planning Integration in Francophone West Africa

Apr 23, 2024

Written by Fatimata Sow

The mayor of Pikine (center) and the CMD Pikine health district (far left) handing over to one of the district’s health centers manager.

In Francophone West Africa (FWA), significant efforts are underway to meet national commitments and targets aimed at enhancing maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) and increasing family planning (FP) utilization. Two notable regional investment programs spearheaded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) are both operating in this region and advocating for service integration and FP utilization – namely The Challenge Initiative (TCI) and the Integrated Client-Centered RMNCAH/N Care (INSPiRE), led by IntraHealth International .

TCI’s demand-driven model lets local governments lead FP program implementation with support and coaching from TCI. INSPiRE, on the other hand, focuses on reducing maternal and neonatal mortality by advocating for broader integration of family planning, MNCH, and nutrition services. Recognizing the shared geographical focus and complementary approaches of these programs, a collaborative effort has been initiated to capitalize on synergies, harness best practices, pool resources, and achieve greater impact on FP uptake and service integration.

The objective of this partnership is to leverage the strengths of both programs and experiment with a joint approach across three cities in two countries: Koudougou and Po in Burkina Faso, and Pikine and Touba in Senegal. TCI’s role is pivotal, empowering municipalities and prioritizing high-impact practices and other interventions (HIPs & HIIs) at both institutional and implementation levels. At the institutional level, TCI facilitates municipalities’ self-reliance in FP scale-up, encouraging budget allocation for FP initiatives. At the implementation level, emphasis is on systematic FP needs identification and provision of integrated services during pre- and postnatal care.

Under this collaboration, TCI has achieved significant milestones including the coaching of health providers in TCI and INSPiRE approaches, enhancing providers’ capacity in FP and maternal health, establishing coordination units and steering committees in partner cities to guide program implementation and monitoring and evaluating HIPs & HIIs implementation quality and coverage, and ensuring accountability and effectiveness.

Achievements include:

  • Municipal and health authorities in the target cities have shown support for both TCI and INSPiRE strategies.
  • Implementation of high-impact practices and integration models in health facilities across the districts.
  • In Senegal, training of 157 (73 in Pikine and 84 in Touba ) health service providers in both TCI and INSPIRE approaches, enhancing their capacity to deliver integrated services.
  • In Burkina Faso, 119 providers were trained on integrated approaches and 63 head nurses trained in data collection and entry of PFPP/SMNI/Nutrition services in the DHIS-2 in Koudougou.
  • Training and coaching of Community Health Workers to promote contraceptive use and facilitate referrals to health facilities.
  • Provision of medical and technical equipment to strengthen technical support services in all target cities.
  • Securing intentional political and financial commitment to FP and maternal and newborn health, with dedicated budget lines from city mayors.
  • Implementation of monitoring and evaluation measures to assess coverage and implementation quality of HIIs/HIPs.

According to Adama Diene, TCI’s country manager for Senegal:

 This collaboration underscores the importance of strategic partnerships and program integration in achieving sustainable improvements in family planning and maternal and child health outcomes in both programs’ health districts. Through concerted efforts and shared expertise, TCI/INSPIRE aims to create lasting impact and contribute to the region’s overall health and well-being.”

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