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Evidence from community studies indicates that significant proportions of Indian women (30 percent) may have reproductive tract infections (RTIs). Given that women are in general asymptomatic and that even symptomatic women may not seek care, the estimates are the minimum levels of prevalence. Most women do not seek treatment for RTIs for such reasons as lack of awareness, acceptance that RTIs are part of women's lives, and lack of treatment facilities. On the supply side, in the public sector the treatment for RTIs is limited with most services provided through STD clinics in urban areas. Seeking treatment at STD clinics is stigmatizing to most clients, particularly women. Thus, most clients at STD clinics tend to be men and their partners may remain untreated. Women are more likely to seek treatment from gynecologists or maternal and child health facilities. This paper discusses preliminary observations from ongoing operations research in Uttar Pradesh that attempts to assess the feasibility of integrating the management of RTIs with existing primary health care services provided by primary health centers or rural health hospitals like community health centers and postpartum centers.






Asia & Near East Operations Research and Technical Assistance Project