By Nonduduzo Kunene | 2022-07-11
Mbabane -The ministry of health has urged women to use other forms of contraception, such as the loop or implants, following a shortage of contraceptive pills, ovral 28.
This comes as a number health facilities in the country reported a shortage of contraceptive pills.
As a result of the shortage, health facilities are forced to ration dispensing the pills.
Health facilities normally dispense three to four-month supply of the pills which are taken daily but currently, they dispense a two-month supply.
According to some women who prefer the pills than the injection, this was not the first time that there was a shortage of birth control pills. The injection is taken once in three months and it contains a hormone called progestin which prevents pregnancy by stopping the ovaries releasing an egg each month.
Most women taking the injection stop experiencing their monthly periods after the third or fourth injection.
The shortage of contraceptives started last year when the country ran out of the injection, which increased demand for the pills. This resulted in the pills also eventually running out.
Insiders shared that when the pills ran out, women reverted to using the injection because it was available at the time.
“Most women who were using the pills said the injection had many side effects, which included making them fat thus the concern about lesser supply than they are normally used to,” said an insider.
According to the source, some of the women lamented the prolonged bleeding, which is normal when one starts using the injection.
The Director of Health Services, Dr Vusi Magagula, confirmed that health facilities do not have sufficient contraceptive pills and attributed this to a number of factors.
Dr Magagula said the shortage of the pills was caused by the shortage of the injection, which led to an increase in demand for the pills.
He also disclosed that the shortage was attributed to interruptions in global supplies and the general drug shortage that hit the country, which he said included contraceptive drugs.
“We have reduced supply to our clients,” he stated.
Dr Magagula said they cannot give clients a normal supply when the situation was not normal.
The director also said it was better to dispense the pills in smaller quantities and reach a larger percentage. He said until the situation normalises, women would be given the pills in smaller quantities and urged them to use other forms of contraception like loop or implants as they were always available.
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