Giving Compass' Take:
- Anastasia Moloney reports that the COVID-19 pandemic caused extensive disruptions in access to family planning worldwide that led to 1.4 million unplanned pregnancies.
- What role can you play in supporting continued access to family planning services, even during crises?
- Read about COVID-19 disproportionate toll on women’s rights.
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Nearly 12 million women in poorer countries lost access to contraception in the pandemic, leading to 1.4 million unplanned pregnancies, the United Nations said on Thursday.
Estimates by the UN sexual and reproductive health agency, UNFPA, showed women lost access to contraception as the pandemic drew resources away from family planning or hit supply chains.
Women also lost out due to coronavirus travel restrictions, clinic closures, and stay-at-home orders, the UNFPA said.
“We must ensure that women and girls have uninterrupted access to life-saving contraceptives and maternal health medicines,” UNFPA’s head, Natalia Kanem, said in a statement. “The devastating impact that COVID-19 has had on the lives of millions of women and girls in the past year underscores just how vital it is to ensure the continuity of reproductive health services.”
The UN data highlighted the many ways in which women have suffered disproportionately in the pandemic, be it through greater job losses, increased domestic duties, or rising incidents of domestic and sexual violence.
In 115 low- and middle-income countries, women faced an average disruption in their family planning services of 3.6 months over the past year, UNFPA data showed.
Read the full article about the COVID-19 birth spike by Anastasia Moloney at Global Citizen.