Beth Schlachter, Executive Director, FP2020 writes:
Since our launch in 2012, Family Planning 2020 (FP2020) has been working with our partners – more than 120 commitment makers from across governments, civil society, foundations, the private sector, youth-led organizations, academics and researchers, across the world – to support all women and girls to decide, freely and for themselves, when, whether and how many children they want to have. As a result of this global movement, approximately 60 million additional women and girls are using contraception than eight years ago.
And yet, there is so much more to do. As those of us in global health have long known and was reinforced during the release of last year’s ECHO trial, far too many women, especially young women and adolescent girls, remain simultaneously at risk for both unintended pregnancy and HIV infection. Comprehensive sexual and reproductive healthcare that includes family planning and HIV and STI prevention and treatment services is essential to provide women and their families with the protection they need and the lives they deserve.
In other words, as a global community, we must move toward providing both services together – ideally in one place, by the same provider, on the same day. This means putting the woman’s or girl’s perspectives, needs and rights at the centre of any and all interventions.
And this is especially important right now. The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted healthcare around the world, particularly for women and girls. The pandemic underlines the critical need to move toward more efficient and cost-effective forms of service delivery during and post the pandemic.
FP2020 and IAS – the International AIDS Society – recently brought the HIV and FP communities together in conversation to outline how DSD models can be used to strengthen FP service delivery. And will do so again on 2 December – find out more here. But there is so much more to do and so many more actions to take as we move toward true integration.
At FP2020, our commitment to continuing to integrate sexual and reproductive health (SRH) and HIV services will remain steadfast.
FP2020 is a global partnership to empower women and girls by investing in rights-based family planning. Since its launch in 2012, FP2020 has been at the forefront of the rights-based family planning (RBFP) conversation, which overlaps very much with the client-centered approach of the IAS DSD initiative.
Photos courtesy of FP2020