The Central Regional Health Directorate (RHD) of the Ghana Health Service has expressed concern about the low patronage of family planning services in the region.
According to Ms. Margaret Forson, Deputy Regional Director in charge of Public Health, the acceptance rate of the services in the region was currently 15.6 per cent.
That, she indicated, was the highest in four years since the patronage declined from 16.5 per cent in 2012 to 13.5 per cent in 2015.
Mrs. Forson made this known at a forum on post national launch of Family Planning Week in Cape Coast on Tuesday.
This year’s celebration launched in Accra earlier this week is on the theme, ‘Family Planning is your life: Take control, it is an everyday thing’.
The forum, attended by health personnel, traditional leaders, media practitioners and other stakeholders, aimed at intensifying awareness through collaborative efforts.
Ms. Forson said many women in the region were apathetic to the family planning services, making it a major challenge to health care providers.
She said the trend was worrying, especially when teenage pregnancy was on the ascendancy in some communities.
The Deputy Director said efforts by the Ghana Health Service to address family planning issues were hindered by negative perceptions, discriminatory attitudes and lack of education.
Others factors, she said were socio-cultural and religious beliefs and lack of support from the men, adding that the service would not relent in efforts to address the situation.
Ms. Forson stressed the need for high patronage of the services, as it helped diminish unwanted pregnancies and abortion, maternal and infant mortality.
She urged husbands and fathers to encourage their wives and adult children to patronise the services as they would help them to strategise and take proper care of their family.
Mr. Mathew Ahwireng, Regional Health Education Officer, said the directorate would continue to create awareness on family planning and build capacities of service providers.
From Jonathan Donkor, Cape Coast