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Process to forge new FP partnership begins in Jan

Published : 06 Nov 2020 10:06 PM | Updated : 07 Nov 2020 01:42 AM

The recommitment process of the FP2020 will kick off in January and run through the year with an aim to devise a new ‘commitment-based’ partnership model for family planning.

The new partnership, which is expected to be launched formally at the International Conference on Family Planning in November 2021, will continue to 2030.

“It will be a commitment-based partnership with a Country-led and country-driven mandate that seeks to strengthen the role of civil society (including youth) in accountability efforts and promote greater advocacy coordination and alignment,” Beth Schlachter, Executive Director of Family Planning 2020 or FP2020 said.

She was speaking at the 10th session of the 10th Asia Pacific Conference on Reproductive and Sexual Health and Rights (APCRSHR10) held virtually. The APCRSHR10, and Reproductive Health Association of Cambodia (RHAC) and CNS are co-hosting the six-month long conference which is being held in 14 different sessions, each two weeks apart.

The FP2020 is a global community of partners working together to ensure women and girls are empowered to decide, freely and for themselves, whether, when, and how many children to have.

This global partnership is aimed at enabling 120 million more women and girls to access and use contraceptives by 2020. Bangladesh is one of the focus countries.

As of July 2019, 314 million women and girls are using modern contraceptive methods in 69 FP2020 focus countries. As a result of modern contraceptive use between July 2018 and July 2019, 119 million unintended pregnancies were prevented; 21 million unsafe abortions and 134,000 maternal deaths were averted, the executive director said.

As challenges remained, she said, the new partnership would “ensure voluntary modern contraceptive use by everyone who wants it, achieved through individuals’ informed choice and agency, responsive and sustainable systems providing a range of contraceptives, and a supportive policy environment.”

It will be monitored through the FP2030 measurement framework, including whether (i) Individuals have information about methods and side effects for a range of contraceptive choices and the ability to exercise their right to determine whether, when and how many children they want to have. (ii) Responsive health systems equitably and sustainably provide high quality services and supplies for a range of contraceptive methods. (iii) Countries and partners have supportive policy, financing, and accountability environments that enable voluntary contraceptive use.

“In addition to addressing the barriers for women and girls to have access to a full range of modern contraceptives, programmes must support interventions that address harmful norms and practices, such as early marriage and gender-based violence, as well as positive norms such as keeping girls in school, involving men and boys as healthy partners in contraceptive use, and promoting the healthy timing and spacing of pregnancy,” she said.

Dr Neeta Shrestha, Reproductive Health Specialist at UNFPA Nepal, said Nepal has made tremendous progress in promoting universal access to reproductive health including family planning.

“It made early commitments to the FP2020 global partnership in 2015 with a pledge to increase funding for family planning and to address the systemic barriers to FP services,” she said.

Despite this positive policy environment, she, however, said there are ‘persistent gaps’ which need to be addressed.