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20 health workers from facilities throughout the 5 districts of Enga Province recently joined a week-long training on the Minimum Initial Service Package (MISP) for sexual and reproductive health (SRH) in emergency situations and the clinical management of rape.

MISP in crisis situations is a series of crucial, lifesaving activities required to respond to the SRH needs of affected populations at the onset of a humanitarian crisis.

The specialized training, led by the PNG Family Health Association, in partnership with the United Nations Population Fund and funding support from USAID, is important as humanitarian emergencies can disrupt access to supplies and support that would be available during the facilities’ regular operations.

The Director of Curative Health Services of Enga Provincial Health Authority, Dr. Betty Koka, expressed that while the health workers are already trained to provide sexual reproductive health services, this is the first training on how to provide these services in humanitarian settings, especially in conflict and natural disasters.

 “Through this training, our health workers will learn how to respond to the immediate health needs of vulnerable populations, especially women and girls and people living with disabilities,” she said.

Dr. Koka also stressed on the importance of engaging men and boys during such emergencies as a focus throughout the training.

“In a cultural setting such as Enga Province, where men and boys are given more prominence, engaging them as partners for better sexual and reproductive health is key to ensuring women and girls have access to their SRH rights and needs.”

The Enga PHA now plans to roll out this training at the district level within the remaining months of 2023, with the 20 health workers going back into their district health facilities to train their local staff.

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Thomas Huliambari
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