Gaborone, Botswana - 24 August 2018: Botswana conducted an integrated review of the Reproductive, Maternal, Neonatal, Child and Adolescent Health and Nutrition (RMNCAH-N) in 2015. The review was conducted when a number of policy and strategic plans documents for most the RMNCAH-N progress were coming to an end including that of adolescent health. The results of the review and other program specific evaluations revealed a number of gaps, for example, insufficient number of health workers competent on ASRH programs; limited operating hours with facilities closing at while adolescents are in schools; family planning commodity stock out, to mention but a few.
On the basis of these reviews, Botswana MOHW in collaboration with UNFPA and WHO developed an Integrated Strategy on Reproductive, Maternal, Neonatal, Child and Adolescent Health and Nutrition (RMNCAH-N) to guide the country towards achieving key Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and aligning it with the outcomes of the UN SG’s 2.0 Global Strategy on Women’s, Children’s and Adolescents’ Health 2030.
The development of an Operational Plans for adolescent health has been embarked upon drawn from the MOHW Integrated Strategy on Reproductive, Maternal, Neonatal, Child and Adolescent Health and Nutrition. The program started with the first three days (20th – 23rd August 2018) comprising of interview of policy makers and stakeholders from concerned ministries of Health and Wellness, Education, Youth Empowerment and Development, Gender Ministry, UN Agencies, youth NGOs, etc. Desk review of documents related to ADH (evaluations, program reviews and reports) was also conducted, the result of which has and will continue to influence the development of the operational.
This culminated in a workshop (24th – 25th August, 2018) organized that brings key stakeholders together to contribute to the development of an Operational Plan for the Adolescent component of the Integrated RMNCAH-N Strategy and to ensure that key interventions and processes for adolescent health and nutrition are included, in line with the priorities outlined in the UN Global Strategy for WCA and the AA-HA! Global Guidance to country implementation, and linked to WHO AFRO’s adolescent health flagship initiative.
A series of activities are planned to take place between now and October for the finalization of the Operational Plan including further work on the strategy involving other key stakeholders were not represented.