Expanding Access to Injectable Contraceptives through Pharmacies Toolkit: Resource for Considering DMPA-SC
Across the 69 Family Planning 2020 focus countries, one in five married women of reproductive age have an unmet need for modern contraceptive methods. One of the barriers that keeps people from accessing quality family planning services is a shortage of health care workers in their country. Task sharing, or the sharing of certain responsibilities among health workers of various levels, is a promising strategy for countries facing this issue. The World Health Organization recommends that injectable contraceptives be administered by pharmacists. Despite these recommendations, pharmacists in many countries are unable to administer injectable contraceptives due to policies that prohibit pharmacists and medicine sellers from providing “medical services,” which includes the administration of injectable contraceptives. This misalignment between the World Health Organization and country policies presents an opportunity to advocate for an expanded scope of practice for pharmacists. This is part of a toolkit designed to help pharmacy associations become effective advocates and begin working to change policies in their countries. It provides relevant information for advocating for depo-medroxyprogesterone (DMPS-SC).