National Reproductive Health Strategy in Republic of Moldova: final assessment and new perspectives
Reproductive health has been a long-standing priority in the Republic of Moldova. However, a recent evaluation of the National Reproductive Health Strategy (NRHS) set in 2005 revealed important issues to be addressed in all of 11 priority areas assessed.
Recommendations and general conclusions
The evaluation was initiated to measure achievement of the Strategy’s objectives and expected outcomes; to identify the factors that favoured and/or hindered its implementation; and to make recommendations regarding a new 5-year strategy and the process for its development.
The preliminary results identified the following areas for improvement to be addressed in the new strategy:
- monitoring of implementation;
- reproductive health statistics (on maternal mortality, perinatal morbidity and mortality, abortion, modern contraception prevalence, sexually transmitted infections and HIV infection, genital cancers, etc.);
- access to reproductive health services and products, especially for certain vulnerable groups;
- regulation framework implementation, to increase its impact on the quality of provided services;
- alignment of the pregraduate and postgraduate curricula for health care providers with new standards of care;
- community education and involvement.
The preliminary results were presented and discussed by key stakeholders and development partners on 30 October 2014, in an event organized by the Ministry of Health with support from WHO/Europe and the United Nations Population Fund (NFPA). Participants included representatives from the ministries of health, social affairs, education, youth and sports, health service providers, interagency partners and development agencies.
The meeting’s objectives were:
- to present the preliminary findings of the final assessment of the National Reproductive Health Strategy for 2006-2015;
- to identify gaps;
- to discuss development of the next strategic document.
Principles of the National Reproductive Health Strategy
The NRHS 2005–2015 was developed through a participatory process led by the Ministry of Health and supported by WHO and UNFPA. It established 11 priority areas to concentrate efforts to ensure sexual and reproductive rights. The NRHS was approved by Government Decision no. 913 / August 2005 and followed Republic of Moldova's commitment to achieve the Millennium Development Goals related to the health of women and children.
The principles underlying the development of the NRHS are in accordance with international standards and ensure compliance with commitments assumed by the Republic of Moldova by signing documents and international conventions relevant to reproductive health.
Strategic directions established under the NRHS were carefully selected, relevant and meant to be cost effective. The accent was placed on:
- preventive aspects (primary and secondary);
- increasing the quality of services through the introduction of evidence-based medicine principles and models of good practice in training curricula for health professionals;
- improvement of the relations between providers and beneficiaries;
- cooperation between national institutions;
- partnerships with international institutions;
- social mobilization and community involvement.