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Addressing the postnatal needs of new mothers is a neglected area of care throughout sub-Saharan Africa. Unintended pregnancies during the first 12 months following delivery, and vertical transmission of HIV during labor and delivery, are some of the challenges faced by women during the extended postpartum period. Many women want to delay or avoid another pregnancy, but are not using a modern contraceptive method. Few developing countries ensure that mothers and newborns are assessed early and monitored during the initial six-week period as recommended by WHO, which contributes to discontinuity of services received during pregnancy and delivery and limits linkages to other key services, including family planning, HIV testing and counseling, and HIV care for women and infants. The “Steps to Integration” series provides a guide on how to integrate HIV and SRH services based on findings from the Integra Initiative, managed by the International Planned Parenthood Federation in partnership with the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and the Population Council. Issue 5 of the series focuses on the effect of integrating HIV services on quality of postnatal care in Kenya and Swaziland.






Assessing the Benefits of Integrated HIV and Reproductive Health Services: The Integra Initiative