This blog was originally posted on Impatient Optimists on January 8, 2013. Authors Holly Blanchard, Senior Reproductive Health Family Planning Advisor, and Elizabeth Sasser, Senior Program Coordinator, work with Jhpiego in the Maternal and Child Health Integrated Program (MCHIP). For both mothers and infants, there are many benefits to preventing another pregnancy for at least two years after a previous birth. In this blog, they talk about the opportunity to introduce modern family planning methods immediately after delivery, such as the postpartum intrauterine contraceptive device (PPIUCD).
This year, 222 million women worldwide will have an unmet need for modern contraception. And as more women are encouraged to deliver in facilities, there is greater opportunity for immediate postpartum intrauterine contraceptive device (IUCD) services.
Abdela Abdosh, a midwife working in Ethiopia, can offer a testament of what this service can mean in a woman’s life. He tells the story of 30-year old Shumba Berisso, a mother who arrived at an MCHIP-supported facility in Ethiopia in labor with her eighth baby. After the delivery, she turned her head away from her newborn and sobbed silently, saying she had no means to care for the baby.
“If only I could have prevented this pregnancy,” Shumba lamented, adding that her other seven children had never set foot in a classroom, instead spending their days toiling on neighboring farms.