Menstrual hygiene management in disasters: the concerns, needs, and preferences of women and girls in Vanuatu

Downing, Sandra, Benjimen, Sandrine, Natoli, Lisa, and Bell, Veronica (2021) Menstrual hygiene management in disasters: the concerns, needs, and preferences of women and girls in Vanuatu. Waterlines, 40 (3). pp. 144-159.

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Abstract

In disaster settings, women and girls face additional challenges in safely managing menstruation with confidence and dignity. Assessing women’s and girls’ needs and preferences at country level prior to a disaster assists Red Cross National Societies with preparedness planning and development of local menstrual hygiene management (MHM) kits for pre-positioning. This study, conducted in Vanuatu, examined the experiences, concerns, needs, and preferences of women and girls in managing menstruation in disasters. Participants trialled one of four different sanitary products included in a MHM kit. Absorbency, security of fit, and odour were the main determinants of product acceptability. Water supply and safe disposal options influenced the preference for either reusable or disposable products. Access to sanitary products, distribution processes, water supply, and privacy were key concerns. Detailed recommendations within this paper will support the Vanuatu Red Cross in decision making and programming for MHM in disaster preparedness and response.

Item ID: 68838
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1756-3488
Keywords: menstruation, menstrual hygiene management, MHM kits, disaster, Vanuatu, women and girls
Copyright Information: © The authors, 2021. This open access article is published by Practical Action Publishing and distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No-derivatives CC BY-NC-ND licence http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/.
Date Deposited: 25 Nov 2021 06:28
FoR Codes: 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4206 Public health > 420699 Public health not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 20 HEALTH > 2099 Other health > 209999 Other health not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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