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Contraceptive injection promoted

Injectable contraception will become more readily available in Cambodia with the

release of a new product for women. 'OK Injection' was officially launched February

15 by the social marketing organization Population Services International (PSI).

The product will be distributed by private medical services and NGO clinics to increase

the availability of affordable birth spacing products. While injectable contraception

has been around for 30 years, it was only previously available in Cambodia through

the public sector.

OK Injection is the brand name given to Depo-Provera, a well-known injectable contraceptive

manufactured in the US. Aid from donor foundations means the contraceptive will be

more accessible to local women, with any profits earned going towards health education

and other related programs in Cambodia.

"OK Injection's packaging is made specifically for Cambodian women," said

Barry Whittle, PSI's country representative. "In addition to a fresh disposable

syringe, it contains information in Khmer about birth spacing and HIV, as well as

a calendar indicating the date of the next injection."

Cambodia has one of the highest fertility rates in the region, currently 4 percent.

Increasing birth spacing benefits the health of mothers and children as it gives

them more time to care for their children and to earn money.

"We developed this project to address the continuing high unmet need for contraceptives

and to offer women greater choice of high-quality birth spacing methods in the private

sector," said Whittle. "PSI/Cambodia hopes to increase its assistance to

Cambodia by launching other new products in the near future to help combat the spread

of HIV and to improve maternal and child health."

OK Injection is the third product marketed in Cambodia by PSI. It has distributed

83 million condoms and 1.5 million cycles of birth spacing pills since opening its

Cambodia office in 1993.

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