Addressing Bangladesh’s Demographic Challenges (ABDC) - Phase I

Area of competence: 
Integrated Primary Health Care
Donor organization: 
GIZ (German Agency for International Cooperation)
Start of Project: 
End of Project: 
Value of service: 
€ 1,587,364
Partner Organisations: 
Description of Project: 

Although significant progress had been made in the health sector in Bangladesh during the recent years, the area of sexual and reproductive health services remained weak. The contraceptive prevalence rate was low and discontinuation rates were high. Less than one third of all live births were attended by skilled health personnel resulting in frequent occurrences of delivery complications. Additionally, health care staff were often not sufficiently qualified and/or equipped to provide professional care. These problems occurred particularly in urban centres in Bangladesh. Overall, access to and the availability of sexual and reproductive health services were still very limited in many places. The government recognised the significance of demographic measures, and considered 'population', 'health', and 'nutrition' to be equally important and priority areas for action. The responsible authorities needed to develop further competences, capacities and coordination mechanisms to address problems in these areas.

The objective of the project “Addressing Bangladesh’s Demographic Challenges – ABDC” was to improve the provision of family planning and mother-and-child health care services for people living in urban and peri-urban centres in Sylhet, Rajshahi and Narayangunj City Corporations. The first phase of the project had successfully been completed in August 2015. In the second phase (September 2015 till June 2017), the same set of activities was going to be continued in all three city corporations.

Description of Services: 

This project promoted coordination and cooperation between the two ministries tasked with managing urban health, namely the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare & Ministry of Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives as well as with the Sylhet, Rajshahi and Narayangunj City Corporations.

The specific services provided included:

  • Empowerment of adolescents and young urban couples aged between 15 and 24 with comprehensive and relevant information, education and communication (IEC) materials about the significance of family planning and of professionally assisted childbirth.
  • Facilitate improvement in quality management of urban health services access, monitoring and reporting systems through tested and proven strategies such as “youth friendly” health services and making counselling services easily accessible in everyday lives.
  • Training coordination and monitoring through ‘master trainers’ to train professional midwives and health workers (e.g. family welfare visitors and paramedics) at the primary, secondary and tertiary levels.
  • Strengthening of organizational capacity of the city corporations’ health departments to ensure that they manage their health sector activities better.
  • On-going advice to the City Corporations on how to improve inter-ministerial coordination mechanisms for SRH services (between the Health and the FP Division of the national Ministry, the Ministry for Local Governance, rural development and cooperatives, and the concerned city corporations).
Project Volume: 
€ 1,587,364