Pakistan has a population of 194 million, making it the sixth largest country in the world. If current rates continue, Pakistan will become the fifth biggest by 2050. Although the fertility rate has declined on a national level from 4.9 children per woman in 1990-91 to 3.8 in 2012-13, it has not changed much for women who are poor and in rural areas. In its State of the World’s Mothers 2015 report, Save the Children ranked Pakistan 149th out of 178 countries in its Mothers’ Index which assesses the well-being of mothers.
To address these issues, DKT International established a program with its own funding in 2012 and started selling products the same year. Since then, DKT Pakistan has hired staff, registered with the Government of Pakistan, and built partnerships with national and local governments, including the Ministry of Health and the Maternal, Neonatal and Child Health Program of the provincial governments. It has attracted funding from the British Department for International Development (DFID) and the Packard Foundation.
DKT Pakistan has identified and begun the steps necessary to reach Pakistani couples and the more than six million women (20% of married women) with an unmet need for contraception. DKT has two main strategies for increasing access to contraception:
- Through social marketing of condoms like Josh and Prudence and other contraceptives like Heer IUDs and oral and injectable contraceptives in traditional and non-traditional sales outlets.
- Through social franchising in DKT’s Dhanak Health Care Centers network of midwife-owned and managed clinics (“dhanak” means rainbow in Urdu). The Dhanak clinics emphasize long-term methods (such as IUDs), adding diversity to a method mix that is heavily dependent on short-term contraceptives. Most of these clinics are renovations of existing clinics but some are newly constructed. In its first three years, DKT Pakistan opened 850 Dhanak clinics.
Both the social marketing and social franchising operations are focused on rural areas of Pakistan, which contain 65% of the country’s population, and have reduced access to reproductive healthcare providers and contraception.
DKT Pakistan uses two main tactics to reach new users of family planning products and services:
- In rural villages, DKT operates mobile units that put on shows in rural villages for both women and men. The shows entertain and educate people on contraceptive options, and refer them to the nearest Dhanak Health Care Center.
- In suburban areas, DKT implements “Dhanak Corners” — small, pop-up stands in front of pharmacies that offer family planning information and refer women to the nearest Dhanak Health Care Center.
DKT Pakistan tests different tactics to promote family planning and sexual and reproductive health respectfully and clearly within Pakistan’s cultural context. These TV advertisements show how DKT Pakistan creatively promotes family planning in the Pakistani context. In two years, DKT Pakistan has broadcast 41,290 TV spots and 14,874 radio spots, reaching an estimated 98 million people.
Since the beginning of its operations in late 2012 through 2014, DKT Pakistan has sold 24.3 million condoms, 732,704 cycles of oral contraceptives, 110,962 IUDs, 168,953 packages of emergency contraception, 81,358 vials of injectable contraception and 2.9 million tablets of misoprostol, resulting in 967,283 couple years of protection.
In 2015, DKT Pakistan sold over 25 million condoms, more than 956,000 oral contraceptives, 202,000 doses of emergency contraception, and 142,000 IUDs, generating 1.1 million couple years of protection.
For more information, please contact our country director. You can find their information here.
JOSH Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/joshcondoms
Prudence Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/
Prudence Twitter: https://twitter.com/PrudencePak