Context: Although many countries adopted the Programme of Action drafted at the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) in Cairo, little is known about countries' experiences with revising reproductive health policies and implementing programs since then. Methods: In-depth interviews were conducted in 1997 with stakeholders in eight countries -three in Asia (Bangladesh, India and Nepal), three in the Middle East and Africa (Jordan, Ghana and Senegal) and two in Latin America and the Caribbean (Jamaica and Peru). Results: While all but two of the countries have adopted the ICPD definition of reproductive health and all have initiated policy reforms to reflect a new focus, less has been accomplished in implementing integrated reproductive health programs. Several challenges face all eight countries as they continue to design reproductive health programs: improving knowledge and support among stakeholders; planning for integration and decentralized services; developing human resources; improving quality of care; and maintaining a long-term perspective regarding the implementation of the Cairo agenda. Conclusions: The next critical steps needed for moving from policy formulation to program implementation are to help countries set priorities for establishing integrated reproductive health interventions, to increase financing for services and to develop strategies for delivering them.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Geography, Planning and Development