Sexual and reproductive health self-care in humanitarian and fragile settings: where should we start?

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07/04/2021 12:00 am

Conflict and Health

Abstract

Recent crises have accelerated global interest in self-care interventions. This debate paper aims to raise the issue of sexual and reproductive health (SRH) self-care and invites members of the global community operating in crisis-affected settings to look at potential avenues in mainstreaming SRH self-care interventions. We start by exploring self-care interventions that could align with well-established humanitarian standards, such as theĀ Minimum Initial Service Package (MISP) for Sexual and Reproductive Health in Crises, point to the potential of digital health support for SRH self-care in crisis-affected settings, and discuss related policy, programmatic, and research considerations. These considerations underscore the importance of self-care as part of the care continuum and within a whole-system approach. Equally critical is the need for self-care in crisis-affected settings to complement other live-saving SRH interventionsā€”it does not eliminate the need for provider-led services in health facilities. Further research on SRH self-care interventions focusing distinctively on humanitarian and fragile settings is needed to inform context-specific policies and practice guidance.

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