Adapting the Reaching Every District (RED) Strategy in Reducing Unmet Need for Family Planning Among Disadvantaged Women in Mongolia

Session: Impact of Family Planning on Maternal Newborn Health

Presenter: Shinetugs Bayanbileg, United Nations Population Fund
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The RED strategy, originally introduced in Mongolia by WHO and UNICEF to improve immunization coverage was adapted for meeting sexual and reproductive health needs of the disadvantaged women: poor, living in remote pastoral areas, unregistered, young girls at risk, disabled or subject of gender-based violence. The intervention covered Zavkhan, Gobi-Altai and Bayankhongor aimags, and selected sub-districts of Chingeltei District of Ulaanbaatar City starting October 2012. By the end of 2013, 17,019 women were reached out ranging from 17 to 31 percent of reproductive age women in the target areas. The unmet need was calculated for the intervention and non-intervention areas from national household surveys: the MICS 2010 and Social Indicators Sample Survey (SISS) 2013 among poorest and second poorest quintiles and residents of pastoral areas. The data collection of SISS was done during October – December 2013. The MICS 2010 data serving as the baseline did not show any significant difference between the intervention and non-intervention sites. However, more significant reduction from 19.8 to 11.0 was observed in the areas where the RED strategy was implemented among the targeted poorest two quintiles and residents of rural pastoral areas in intervention sites (p<0.01), compared to women with the same characteristics in non-intervention sites, where the unmet reduced from 20.6 to 15.8. At the same time at the project sites, the contraceptive prevalence rate for modern methods among poorest two quintiles and residents of rural pastoral areas has increased from 59.1 to 61.0, while that in the non-project sites reduced from 54.1 to 53.1. The data clearly show that the application of the RED strategy in reproductive health was effective in reducing the unmet need and increasing modern contraceptive use among the disadvantaged population groups.