Quality CBFP services require competent and well-prepared staff and volunteers who can safely provide family planning methods and help clients make informed choices. CBFP providers must possess a range of knowledge and skills to effectively meet each client’s needs including the ability to screen and counsel clients, safely provide CBFP methods, including injections, and manage medical waste.
Ensuring CBFP providers have strong counseling skills is a critical part of the training process. Research suggests that clients who understand the nature of their needs and who believe the provider respects them and is concerned about their well-being, show greater satisfaction with the care they receive and are more likely to continue using FP. In addition, clients who get the method they thought they wanted are also more likely to be satisfied and continue using that method. Fears and concerns regarding side effects are a common reason for discontinuation of FP methods. Ensuring that health care workers are trained to counsel clients on potential side effects, as well as to address clients concerns on side effects when they arise, are a key component of quality FP counseling. Good counseling also depends upon good interpersonal skills, maintaining confidentiality and privacy, tailoring the interaction to the client’s needs, and providing enough information while avoiding overload. Ultimately, counseling needs to help clients assess their own needs, make their own voluntary and informed decisions, and ensure their ability to follow through with those decisions.
This section of the CBFP toolkit contains curricula and job aides that cover screening, counseling, method provision, and waste management. These resources can be used for training program managers and supervisors, as well as resources for CHWs, which can also be adapted to train drug shop operators in family planning.
Program Managers and Supervisors
To successfully design, implement, and manage a CBFP program, program managers must understand the essential elements of CBFP and be familiar with key family planning and reproductive health concepts. Several training materials available in this section of the Toolkit will strengthen the ability of managers and supervisors to plan, implement, and evaluate strong CBFP programs.
Community Health Workers and Drug Shop Operators
Curricula and job aids play an important role in helping to prepare CBFP providers (e.g., CHWs, Drug Shop Operators) to counsel clients and provide contraceptive methods. These lay health worker trainings should include a theoretical, or classroom instruction component, followed by a practicum emphasizing quality counseling and service provision (i.e., safe injection technique). Often the practicum takes place in a clinic or hospital where client load is high so they are able to practice on a number of clients in a short time span, and/or in the health centers in their home area. In both examples, the supervisors of the trained CHW or drug shop operator need to be involved.
For resources on training clinicians in FP who are involved in mobile outreach services, please see K4Health's package of method-specific Toolkits, including Toolkits on Emergency Contraception, Injectables, Implants, IUD, Oral Contraceptives, Condoms, and the Standard Days Method.