Accessing Reproductive Health and HIV Integrated Services

Speeches Shim

Wednesday, July 29, 2020
Rosa in a counseling session with an USAID HFA activist. Through Social Behavior Communication Change in the health units, women living with HIV have access to correct information and RH/FP and HIV integrated services.
Photo credit: HFA project, PSI Angola

Providing Sexual Reproductive Health and HIV integrated services without stigma or discrimination

The USAID Health for All project supports the Ministry of Health through its National Directorate of Public Health, National Malaria Control Program, and the Reproductive Health Department to increase the effectiveness of Government of the Republic of Angola’s resources in satisfying the health needs of its population.

“I did not know that there were contraceptive methods for people living with HIV like me. Now I can protect myself and take care of my children”-said Rosa after listening to Margarida Faria, an activist on Reproductive Health and Family Planning, trained by USAID Health for All project.

Rosa Miranda is a 26 years old single mother of three living in Rangel district of Luanda, Angola’s capital.  During her last pregnancy she was diagnosed with HIV and to her surprise, she found out that her other two older sons, aged 7 and 10 were also HIV positive. Being a mother, her main concern was to be able to take care of her children and be there for them. 

Even though most health units in Angola provide reproductive health (RH) and HIV services, access to both services is limited. Accessing RH and HIV services usually means spending a full day in the health unit due to long waiting hours from one service to the other. This situation is even worse for women living with HIV because of fear of stigma and discrimination.

On this particular day when Rosa was at the Rangel Health Unit to get her HIV treatment with her two sons, Margarida (an activist) was conducting a health talk on reproductive health and family planning services. This is part of a campaigned aimed at increasing demand through improved health messages and behavior change communication. The topic was about HIV prevention, treatment and contraception to avoid unexpected pregnancy. This topic caught Rosa’s attention because she wanted to avoid infecting another child.

Rosa waited until the session was over and asked to talk in private with Margarida. She wanted to know more information about contraception. After the counseling on voluntary FP and her contraceptives options, Rosa was seen by a FP provider and obtained a contraceptive method the same day. “For so long, I have not felt so welcomed by a healthcare provider. After so many depressing days, I have a reason to smile again. Now, I know that I can take care of my children and am thankful for being alive”, said Rosa with great satisfaction.

The USAID Health for All project supports the Ministry of Health through its National Directorate of Public Health, National Malaria Control Program, and the Reproductive Health Department  to increase the effectiveness of Government of the Republic of Angola’s  resources in satisfying the health needs of its population

Last updated: December 21, 2021

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