By Elinera Manyonga
Zimbabwe is facing an acute shortage of contraceptives due to procurement challenges, with the current stocks expected to run out next month, the Zimbabwe National Family Planning Council (ZNFPC) has said.
In an interview with NewsDay, ZNFPC director Munyaradzi Murwira said the family planning products, which are largely donor funded, are expected in the country next year.
“There is an acute shortage of family planning pills, Depo Provera and Implanon, but we, however, have adequate male and female condoms,” he said
Murwira said they had experienced challenges in the disbursement of funds from donors resulting in delayed procurement and shipment of products. However, it’s not all commodities that have low stock levels,” he said.
“We are currently working with donors and the suppliers to expedite shipment. We will be receiving some of the commodities in the coming weeks to avert serious stock-outs of the commodities. We expect the situation to normalise by December/January when we get most of the shipments into the country.”
Murwira said in addition, the Health ministry was working to ensure that there was significant domestic funding for the procurement of family planning products to complement support from donors as a long-term strategy.
Zimbabwe has one of the best family planning programmes in sub-Saharan Africa, with a contraceptive prevalence rate (CPR) of 67% and an unmet need of 10% that is the proportion of women aged 15-49 using family planning which is an improvement from 59 percent in 2010.
But the CPR could deteriorate if the country continues to experience contraceptive shortages every now and then.