Participants at VCAT Worshop in Kribi & SOGOC executive.
Close to 20 medical practitioners in Kribi of the South Region of Cameroon have enhanced their capacities on Comprehensive Abortion Care. This was during a one-day training organized by the Society for Gynaecologists and Obstetricians Cameroon SOGOC.
The training that held at the conference hall of Tara Plage brought together general practitioners, gynaecologists, midwives and nurses, had as objective to enhance health service givers knowledge, attitudes, and intended practices regarding comprehensive abortion care and related Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) services.
SOGOC had as representative during the training the National Secretary General Dr Darolles Mwandje and Dr Fouelifack the Assitant Treasurer as well as the ACAC project team.
The first part of the workshop targeted the prevalence of unsafe abortion amongst participants. The exercise titled “Crossing the line” revealed that participants are directly or indirectly concerned with this issue. The cross the line exercise showed that abortion is real and has killed or affected at least, a close one to every participant. The lead facilitator Ngang Peter highlights that every individual grows up with personal beliefs and values but they always get the opportunity to evaluate and refine these beliefs, especially if it has a negative impact on humanity.
The next exercise identified the different values held by partcipants related to abortion. The overall goal was to establish if these values could cause them to compromise in their professional practices as health care providers. They were encouraged to demonstrate empathy and give a listening ear to women and health care workers, who are confronted with abortion related situations.
In a brief presentation done by Dr Fouelifack, he painted a picture of maternal mortality in Cameroon and the work done by the ACAC project towards reducing maternal mortality. He informed participants that the project in its 5th year, is advocating for judicial and administrative reforms to the abortion law of Cameroon to be simplified.
The participants took different turns in narrating their different experiences with abortion related stories, which led to the conclusion that, more women die from the phenomenon because of the non-provision of abortion care service, ignorance of the law and the fear of stigma.
The last part of the workshop was a presentation and distribution of the referral pathway document to participants. The five part document was born from the need for a manual that clearly spells out standardized guidelines for medical care, treatment and rehabilitative services for survivors of rape. The publication provides a multi sectorial response to most of the dilemmas stakeholders face in handling survivors. It also takes into consideration, the national strategies for preventing and eliminating all forms of sexual violence and was developed in collaboration with government ministries and organization working in the areas of SRHR
The training ended with a closing remark from Dr Darolles who thanked participants for coming and motivated them to share acquired knowledge with other colleagues.