The Reproductive and Child Health Department is responsible for coordinating the implementation of reproductive and child health strategies and activities at the national level. The unit is headed by a Deputy Director of Reproductive and Child Health.
The vision of the department is to have improved health status of mothers, children, adolescents, young people, women and men of reproductive health through equitable access to appropriate, comprehensive, quality and cost-effective reproductive health information, education and services.
The department seeks to contribute to improvement in the health of all children, adolescents and men and women of reproductive age by:
(i) providing access to accurate education and information on general reproductive and child health care
(ii) providing access to safe, effective, affordable and acceptable methods of family planning;
(iii) providing access to appropriate health-care services that will enable women to go safely through pregnancy and childbirth and provide couples with the best chance of having a healthy infant;
(iv) providing access to appropriate services that promote the survival, growth and development of all children and
(v) providing access to health information and health services relevant to the age and gender specific needs of adolescents and young people to enable them make informed decisions.
At the regional level, the Department works closely with the public health units headed by the Deputy Director of Public Health through the regional public health nurses. And at the district level with the District Public Health Nurses. At the national level, the RCH Department also works closely with the other departments and divisions within GHS in the area of policy review and development, monitoring and evaluation, capacity building and research amongst others.
The Department also collaborates with other Ministries, Departments, Agencies, Development and Implementing partners, Non-governmental Organizations, Civil Society Organizations and the Private sectors working in reproductive and child health areas
The Department has four main programs which are coordinated by programme managers/coordinators and officers:
Safe Motherhood: This program is concerned with maintaining the health of the woman/and her new-born throughout the process of pre-conception, pregnancy, childbirth and the post-delivery period.
Child Health: This program focuses on the first five years of life as it is the most vulnerable period of childhood which sets the tone for child growth and development thereafter; this includes newborn health and breastfeeding.
Family Planning: This includes the provision of education, methods and practices to space births, limit family size and prevent unintended pregnancies, and serving as a link to other reproductive health services such as prevention and management of RTIs and STIs
Adolescent Health: The programme seeks to improve access to and quality of adolescent and youth-friendly health services as well as enhances the capacity of service providers in addressing the health needs of young people.