UNITED NATIONS POPULATION FUND
UNFPA is the longest-serving multilateral agency in the field of family planning. For over 40 years, UNFPA has supported family planning in more than 150 countries, ensuring that women and girls have the right to make choices that will enable them to fulfill their greatest potential. UNFPA’s work in family planning is guided by its corporate strategy Choices not Chance, which is based on principles of human rights, equity, non-discrimination, national ownership, accountability, and innovation. The overall goal is to accelerate universal access to rights-based family planning.
UNFPA works with national governments, civil society, and national institutions to build an enabling environment for family planning, increase demand and improve availability of quality contraceptives, and strengthen service provision and information systems. UNFPA support is provided through coordination and partnerships, advocacy and policy dialogue, procurement, capacity building, and knowledge management.
The key vehicle for implementing Choices not Chance is the flagship Global Programme to Enhance Reproductive Health Commodity Security (GPRHCS). GPRHCS directly supports 46 priority countries where the need for family planning is the greatest. Focused work in these priority countries has led to significant progress in accelerating access to rights-based family planning.
In 2013, contraceptives procured by UNFPA for the 46 priority countries amounted to 35 million couple-years of protection, which have the potential to avert an estimated 9.5 million unintended pregnancies, 6.4 million unintended births, 27,300 maternal deaths, and 1.1 million unsafe abortions.
Better coordination and stronger political commitment: 70% of the priority countries had functional coordinating mechanisms for reproductive health commodity security (RHCS) in place, and 54% had budget lines for reproductive health commodities. Budget allocations increased in a number of countries.
Contraception for young people is on the agenda: 89% of the priority countries carried out resourced action plans for demand generation to reach young people. Seventy-two percent of the priority countries are addressing young people’s access to contraceptive services in their health policies.
Expanding access to new users: 80% of the priority countries implemented demand generation activities; 56% carried out integration of sexual and reproductive health and family planning services, helping to expand services in a more effective and efficient manner.
Building capacity for stronger health systems: 67% of the priority countries conducted training for family planning service provision, including long-acting reversible methods. The focus of capacity-building initiatives is on institutional development at the regional and country levels.
Stronger forecasting to avert stock-outs: 70% of the priority countries made no ad hoc request for contraceptives, which means that demand forecasting was effective. In the last six months of 2013, no stock-outs of contraceptives were reported in at least 50% of the service delivery points in Burkina Faso, Lao PDR, Nepal, Nigeria, Niger, DR Congo, and Sierra Leone.
Ensuring human rights in family planning service provision: 85% of the priority countries have developed national guidelines and protocols that include a rights-based approach to RHCS and family planning.
In addition, AccessRH, the UNFPA-managed reproductive health procurement platform and information service, has contributed to a significant reduction in delivery times compared to non-AccessRH sources. In 2013, AccessRH reduced lead times by 87% for fistula kits, 80% for female condoms, and 75% for male condoms.
UNFPA will continue to fulfill its commitments to FP2020, supporting stronger family planning programs at the country level to reach an additional 120 million women and girls by 2020. With a focus on the post-2015 agenda across all programs, UNFPA will continue to place emphasis on upholding reproductive rights and promoting comprehensive, intersectoral, integrated, and inclusive approaches; addressing the needs of adolescents and young people; and directly tackling population dynamics, especially in relation to family planning and the demographic dividend.