MSF focused on improving access to sexual and reproductive health in the Philippines this year.
An MSF assessment, conducted in 2015, confirmed the need for sexual and reproductive health services in the densely populated and impoverished Tondo area of the capital, Manila. This year, in response to that need, MSF launched a programme, which is run in collaboration with Likhaan, a national organisation. The MSF team supported the local clinic’s family planning services, carrying out an average of 1,000 consultations each month, and improved screening, diagnosis and treatment for sexually transmitted infections. In October, the clinic also started to provide screening for cervical cancer and cryotherapy. In November, 89 patients were screened. Of these, six tested positive, five underwent cryotherapy and one was referred. As a prevention measure, there were plans this year to begin a vaccination campaign against human papillomavirus, reaching 24,000 girls aged between nine and 13. However, delays in importing the vaccines meant that the first round of vaccination had to be postponed to February 2017.