In Nepal, PSI works with the local government, the private sector and local and international organizations to ensure access to the sustainable health solutions consumers deserve, which includes access to contraception, adolescent sexual and reproductive healthcare and hygiene and sanitation products and services.
Our Presence in
PSI Nepal was founded in 2002 to work on HIV/AIDS prevention, child survival and sexual and reproductive health in support of the government of Nepal’s National Reproductive Health and HIV/AIDS Prevention Strategies. Currently, PSI Nepal works with local partners to implement health programs in the areas of maternal health, adolescent sexual and reproductive health, as well as water, sanitation and hygiene.
In 2018, PSI provided 38,055 years of healthy life for Nepalis, which includes:
users reached with modern contraception
safe abortions provided
years of protection against unintended pregnancy for Nepali couples
We Focus On
In 2009, PSI launched the Women’s Health Project in Nepal to support the Government of Nepal’s contribution to Millennium Development Goal 5—to improve global maternal health, now also included in the Sustainable Development Goals—by increasing access to long-acting reversible contraceptive methods and reducing maternal mortality. The project increases the supply of modern contraceptives on the market by leveraging a network of private sector clinics and uses interpersonal communication and mass media to increase demand for contraception.
PSI Nepal also supports the Family Planning 2020 (FP2020) global partnership, which calls for the rights of women and girls to decide freely, and for themselves, whether, when and how many children they want to have. As part of its FP2020 pledge, the Government of Nepal has committed to increase the prevalence rate for modern methods of contraception from 47% in 2014 to 50% by 2020. Nepal has also committed to balancing the nationwide use of permanent methods, long-term reversible methods and short-term methods.
Despite recent improvements, the maternal mortality rate in Nepal is still high at 186 deaths per 100,000 live births. Unsafe abortions that result from unwanted pregnancies remain a significant cause of maternal death among Nepalis. What’s more, women are prevented from easily accessing the safe abortion services they deserve due to restricted access and limited awareness of the fact that abortion is legal in Nepal.
Since 2002, Nepali law has allowed the termination of pregnancies at up to 12 weeks of gestation or up to 18 weeks of gestation if the pregnancy is a result of rape or incest, or if a medical practitioner determines that the life of the mother is at risk or the fetus is deformed. However, only 41% of women ages 15 to 49 believe that abortion is legal in Nepal.
PSI Nepal takes a market development approach to providing reproductive health services that contribute to reducing the maternal mortality rate and the prevalence of unsafe abortions. Working with both the Ministry of Health and Population and the private sector, PSI Nepal’s support strengthens contraception and safe medical abortion services provided at both public and private facilities. In 2009, PSI Nepal formed a network of private sector providers and began building their capacity to deliver quality sexual and reproductive health services. Later branded the OK network, it now comprises 220 predominantly mid-level providers. Providers are stationed in 30 districts across Nepal and provide quality services at affordable prices to poor and under-served populations.
PSI Nepal also supports the Government of Nepal to expand long-acting contraceptive method provision and medical abortion services in public health facilities in districts where services have not previously been available. PSI Nepal also coordinates national communication campaigns to raise awareness about safe abortion and long-acting reversible contraceptives at the community, regional and national level.
In Nepal, there are approximately 9.5 million adolescents and youth aged 10-24 years—over one-third the total population. While sexual and reproductive health services are available through the public and private sectors in Nepal, only 21% of married and sexually active women aged 15-24 years old use a modern contraceptive method and 33.2% have an unmet need for contraception. The government of Nepal is committed to increasing the number of additional users of sexual and reproductive health services, with a special focus on meeting the needs of adolescents and youth.
Working with both the Ministry of Health and Population and the private sector, PSI Nepal’s support will improve the knowledge of reproductive health options among adolescent and youth through targeted community engagements, as well as expand the availability of adolescent focused services in 30 identified private sector facilities in 27 municipalities in the west of Nepal.
Although access to improved water sources in Nepal has increased, the safety of household drinking water is uncertain and household water treatment is rarely practiced. Per 2017 government estimates, 85% of the total population has access to a clean water supply and only 62% of the population has access to basic sanitation.
Together with the Netherlands Development Organization, PSI Nepal is implementing the five-year, USAID-funded Health and Hygiene Activity in five districts of mid-western Nepal. The project aims to bolster community health by integrating hygiene services with local health service delivery.
Through the Health and Hygiene Activity, PSI Nepal is bringing people, systems and infrastructure together to provide sustainable, affordable infrastructure development for health clinics and to promote good hygiene behaviors. PSI Nepal uses behavior change communication with providers themselves to address their individual biases and barriers to adopting improved hygienic behaviors, which in turn helps them better serve their clients.