Family and Reproductive Health, WHO Country Office, Dakar, Senegal
Fatim Tall, MD, Ob/Gyn, MSc
National Professional Officer, Family & Reproductive Health, WHO Country Office, Dakar, Senegal
I graduated in 1995 with a Medical Doctor degree and I also hold a postgraduate degree in Ob/Gyn (1999) and a Master of Science in Disease Control / Reproductive Health (2003). I have extensive clinical experience in offering Reproductive Health Services in a regional maternity ward (with more than 4000 deliveries each year), and as a member of the regional medical team of Saint-Louis region. I have twelve years of progressive experience in the design, implementation and monitoring/evaluation of Maternal & Family Health programs in Senegal.
Indeed, firstly, I was in charge of the Infant Nutrition Promotion program including breastfeeding at the University Hospital Dantec and at the district level, and secondly, I was the coordinator of clinical services (Post-Abortion Care, Maternal Health and Family Planning) within Maternal and Family Health Projects funded by USAID. In these positions, I was responsible for supervision, conducting training, and technical guidance for health centre and health post staff in many areas, such as EmOC, FP, Neonatal Care and PAC. These positions allowed me to better understand the Senegalese health system and Reproductive & Family Health issues, but also to identify and test innovative solutions and approaches to better address community needs. They also allowed me to develop and improve technical skills in the supervision and the coordination of the technical assistance to the Ministry of Health at all levels (national and operational). A better understanding of the links which must prevail between the various partners such as the Ministry of Health, national institutions, local NGOs/PVOs, others donors, etc. is another benefit of my previous work experience.
I have been working for the Senegal WHO Country Office since January 2009 as NPO/FHP. I’m responsible for strengthening national capacity to formulate, monitor and evaluate technically sound national Reproductive Health programs and services, particularly within the framework of the District Health System, and for ensuring proper coordination of activities with national, bilateral and multilateral organisations, and NGOs involved in RH services. I’m also responsible for strengthening national capacity to adopt and adapt appropriate technologies for RH services and for collaborating in the development of research protocols in the area of RH and other related fields.
I really wish to improve my research activity, starting from clinical and programmatic experience gained at the national level, which constitutes a real benefit if I have the opportunity to take this high level course. Strengthening my abilities in research in the field of RH will enable me to further contribute over the coming years in sexual and reproductive health research, initiated or supported by the Organization - particularly in the African region and in Senegal - and in the dissemination and use of research results. Indeed, beyond supporting the government in implementing policies and strategies, I have an increasingly strong ambition to have the necessary abilities to better understand the conditions and assist to develop realistic strategies adapted to local conditions. And I am convinced that my participation in this course will be really beneficial for me, for my country, and even for WHO.
Currently, my main areas of interest are:
- The contribution of the community in the improvement of newborn health;
- Measuring maternal death at the district level;
- Reviewing maternal deaths and complications to make pregnancy safer;
- Family planning, particularly FP in post-abortion and postpartum care, which constitute major missed opportunities for improving the use of modern contraception in our countries.
My experience in research is essentially my two theses (MD and MSc) that focused respectively on oral rehydration therapy in the treatment of childhood diarrhea and on home deliveries in the region of St. Louis, a publication titled "Scaling up Post Abortion Care Services: Results from Senegal" and also the support that I have brought in using the WHO strategic approach in preventing unsafe abortions in Guinea and Senegal. I have also participated as technical advisor in the development and implementation of research protocols on family planning community-based services in Senegal.