Defining and Advancing Gender-Competent Family Planning Service Providers: A Competency Framework and Technical Brief (Second Edition)

Around the world, gender norms influence the ability of individuals, couples, and families to meet their desired family planning needs. Provider bias and power imbalances in client-provider and client-client interactions impact the quality and accessibility of family planning reproductive health service providers who have great potential to be change agents. As they overcome biases and offer quality, gender-sensitive, transformative services, they will help all clients make voluntary and informed decisions about their family planning needs, improving both gender equality and reproductive health outcomes.

HRH2030 and USAID’s Office of Population and Reproductive Health developed a global gender-competency framework for family planning service providers to improve gender-awareness in health workers. The framework uses the following six domains to organize competencies, each of which are made up of specific knowledge, skills, and attitudes:

  1. Using gender-sensitive communication
  2. Promoting individual agency
  3. Supporting legal rights and status related to family planning in accordance with rights and local laws
  4. Engaging men and boys as partners and users
  5. Facilitating positive couples’ communication and cooperative decision-making
  6. Addressing gender-based violence

As a part of the second edition updates, HRH2030 interviewed family planning providers in public and private facilities across Ethiopia and the Philippines on gender competency.