Number of health providers trained in FGM management and counseling

Number of health providers trained in FGM management and counseling

Number of health providers trained in FGM management and counseling


The number of health providers who have been trained to manage the complications resulting from female genital mutilation (FGM) procedures, including obstetric/gynecological related, as well as psycho-social, in a specific time period (depending on how often the program holds training) in a geographical area of interest.

Data Requirement(s):

Number and characteristics of providers trained within a specified time period. If targeting and/or linking to inequity, classify trainees by areas served (poor/not poor) and disaggregate by area served.

Training program records, disaggregated by sex, type of provider (e.g., doctor, nurse, midwife), location (community, region, or province), and area in which they work (urban or rural)

The purpose of this indicator is to evaluate the reach of training programs designed for health service providers in managing and counseling complications arising from FGM. These programs are essential in equipping healthcare professionals with the necessary competencies to offer culturally sensitive and medically informed care to women and girls affected by FGM. Recent systematic reviews highlight the significance of such training, demonstrating substantial improvements in the knowledge and attitudes of healthcare providers regarding FGM. Post-training, caregivers showed a marked increase in their ability to recognize different types of FGM and list its complications, reflecting an enhanced understanding crucial for effective patient care (Belfour et al., 2016). Furthermore, the World Health Organization (WHO) has emphasized the need for high-quality care by launching a clinical handbook to assist healthcare workers in providing empathetic and specialized care to FGM survivors. This handbook is a comprehensive resource that covers the management of gynecological, urological, and obstetric complications, alongside providing mental and sexual health support (WHO, 2018). The integration of FGM content into nursing and midwifery curricula is a pivotal step towards ensuring that the upcoming generation of healthcare providers is well-prepared to address the physical and psychosocial impacts of FGM. These curricula are offered on the Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) website.

The recommended management for obstetric complications includes the following:

  • Psychological support: The physical and psychological trauma of FGM is likely to leave women terrified of childbirth and trigger anxiety and depression.
  • Assessment at the first antenatal care visit: The extent of damage and degree of the physical barrier must be determined.
  • Advice on the importance of good nutrition: Women who have undergone FGM may try to limit the size of the baby by cutting down on food, hoping that a smaller baby will result in an easier birth.
  • Monitoring urinary tract infections: Women with FGM can experience difficulty in emptying the bladder due to scar tissue. They are also more prone to urinary tract infection and vaginal infection.
  • Defibulation: Early defibulation (surgically opening the vaginal opening) has the advantage that it makes vaginal examinations possible, avoids the need for a suitably trained person to perform it at delivery, and prevents excessive blood loss at delivery (Rashid and Rashid, 2007).

This indicator will provide a measure of coverage of trained personnel per geographic area of interest and will help monitor whether or not a program is attaining its target number of trained providers.

This indicator provides a count of providers trained, but not how well they integrate the information disseminated or how well they use it in their practice. Because this indicator does not assess improved knowledge and/or skills, it can be complemented with the indicator Number/Percent of trainees who have mastered relevant knowledge.

Jones H., Diop N., Askew I., and Kaboré I. Female Genital Cutting Practices in Burkina Faso and Mali and Their Negative Health Outcomes. Studies in Family Planning, 1999:30(3), 219-230.

Rashid, M. and Rashid, M. H. Review: Obstetric management of women with female genital mutilation. The Obstetrician and Gynecologist. 2007:9, 95-101.

WHO. High-quality health care for girls and women living with FGM. 2018

Belfour, J. et al. 2019.  Interventions for healthcare providers to improve treatment and prevention of female genital mutilation: A systematic review | BMC Health Services

WHO. Training & Education – Female genital mutilation (FGM) prevention and care. (n.d.).

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