Emergency Contraceptive Pills: safe and effective

Emergency contraception (EC) is a safe and effective way to prevent pregnancy after unprotected sex. It can be used by women and girls of reproductive age wishing to prevent unplanned pregnancy after unprotected sex. Emergency contraceptive methods have been available in Nigeria for more than 20 years. However, awareness is low both in urban and rural locations; lowest among young women, low literate and rural populations. The low level awareness has meant that not all women and young girls exposed to emergency situations requiring emergency contraception have access to emergency contraceptive products and services.

Society for Family Health (SFH) Nigeria with support from Management Sciences for Health (MSH) and the International Consortium on Emergency Contraception (ICEC) have developed high quality audience specific technical materials on emergency contraceptive pills (ECPs) for use by pharmacy outlets in Nigeria including patent and proprietary medicine vendors (PPMVs). These materials are used by SFH sales team, SFH projects and implementing partners and any programmer working on family planning to strengthen the pharmacy sector in Nigeria to provide more accurate information about emergency contraception (EC).

The knowledge and understanding of frontline family planning providers such as doctors, nurses, midwives, pharmacists and PPMVs is very pivotal in ensuring access and increasing knowledge about emergency contraception. Counselling on emergency contraception use ideally should be provided to women and girls as part of the total package on the knowledge of contraceptive use and its role in emergency situations requiring emergency contraception. In reality, only providers with adequate knowledge about emergency contraception who also do not have any myths and misconceptions provide the right communication and messages on emergency contraception. These providers are very pivotal in ensuring access and increasing knowledge about EC.

These technical materials developed by SFH are well designed and evidence informed materials used by programmers at both community and service delivery levels to build the capacity of providers on emergency contraception.

Three technical products have been developed;

i. Detailing Folder: This is a high quality technical tool that addresses provider knowledge gaps. This product is used with pharmaceutical outlet operators across Nigeria.

ii. Dangler: The Dangler is an instant attention grabber that communicates information about ECPs to clients of pharmaceutical outlets. This product dangles in pharmacy shops and outlets.

iii. Client Leaflet: The user leaflet is designed to address client knowledge gap, fears and concerns about ECP. They are used by pharmacy outlets and peers of girls and young women to raise knowledge of ECP and increase availability and uptake.

Requests to use these materials can be made to:

Address: Society for Family Health (SFH) Nigeria
Justice Ifeyinwa Nzeako House
#8 Port Harcourt Crescent, Area 11, Garki, Abuja.
Email:  |  Telephone: 09 292 0235

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