Self-injection best practices: designing family planning programs that work

June 18, 2018 by PATH

A woman self-injects the contraceptive DMPA-SC (brand name Sayana Press)

A woman self-injects the contraceptive DMPA-SC (brand name Sayana Press). Photo: PATH/Gabe Bienczycki

Research in Uganda and elsewhere has shown that women are able to self-administer DMPA-SC safely and effectively, that they like doing so, and that self-injection helps support women to continue using injectable contraception.

As the Uganda Ministry of Health plans for national rollout of this new option for women, PATH’s DMPA-SC Self-injection Best Practices initiative is gathering information about how the practice can be designed and implemented at scale. The team in Uganda has applied user-centered design techniques to develop, implement, and evaluate self-injection program models across delivery channels: public-sector facilities, community-based distribution, private-sector outlets, and safe spaces for young women and adolescent girls. The first program data in mid-2018 showed that at least 3,000 women are self-injecting across four districts.

As PATH evaluates these programs, we are regularly sharing insights and lessons learned. If you are planning a self-injection program in your country please feel free to email For more information, see the resources listed below, visit, orsign up for our newsletter.

*DMPA-SC: Subcutaneous depot medroxyprogesterone acetate

Sayana Press is a registered trademark of Pfizer Inc.

“ It saves time to inject at home, and it’s private. Another reason is you get courage. I used to fear the needle so much. ”
— Self-injection client, Uganda


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