Bringing sexual and reproductive health services to Manila's slums

A community mobilizer walks around the community of Aroma, Manila, to find patients due for their vaccination.
PHILIPPINES 2017 © Hannah Reyes Morales
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This information is excerpted from MSF’s 2017 International Activity Report.

In the Philippines, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) focused on improving access to sexual and reproductive health care in slums in the capital, Manila, and responded to violent clashes in the south.

Since 2016, MSF has partnered with a local organization, Likhaan, to offer sexual and reproductive health services in two densely populated and impoverished Manila districts, Tondo and San Andres. In 2017, MSF and Likhaan moved to a larger clinic in Tondo and carried out an average of 1,380 consultations a month between the two clinics. The clinic offers family planning services and care for victims of sexual violence, as well as screening and treatment for cervical cancer. MSF, in conjunction with Likhaan and Manila City Health, also vaccinated more than 23,000 girls against the human papillomavirus, responsible for cervical cancer.

From June 2017, MSF offered psychological first aid and ran water, sanitation, and hygiene activities for people displaced by the conflict between the Philippine armed forces and two pro-Islamic State factions, the Maute group and Abu Sayyaf, in Marawi city, Mindanao region. More than 370,000 people were displaced from Marawi and its surroundings.

MSF provided psychological first aid to more than 11,500 people, and distributed 1,500 hygiene kits, and 1,150 jerry cans. When the siege of Marawi was declared over in late October, MSF remained in the area to support internally displaced people and returnees.