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This month, we are pleased to provide updates on maternal health statistics, global health and rights policies, and more:


Global Perspectives

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WHO to Announce Guidance on Use of Hormonal Contraceptives and HIV Risk
The World Health Organization (WHO) convened a January 31–February 1 technical meeting to inform its recommendation on the use of hormonal contraceptives. A study last fall suggested that the use of hormonal contraceptives may increase a woman’s risk of contracting or transmitting HIV. WHO plans to announce its official guidance on February 16, according to a recent statement.

New Study: Unsafe Abortion on the Rise in Developing Countries
While the global rate of abortion has remained steady between 2003 and 2008, the proportion of abortions that are unsafe is on the rise, particularly in developing countries, according to a recent study by the Guttmacher Institute and World Health Organization. In 2008, 97% of abortions in Africa were considered unsafe, contributing significantly to maternal morbidity and mortality. Overall abortion levels also appear to correlate with unmet need for contraception, which tends to be higher in countries with restrictive abortion laws, the study states.


News and Views

Principal U.S. Health Agency Releases First-Ever Strategy for Global Health
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has released its first-ever Global Health Strategy to improve health, not just in the United States, but worldwide. The strategy spans the period 2011 to 2015 and underscores the vital connection between the health of Americans and that of the rest of the world. Among the 10 objectives identified in the department’s strategy are catalyzing global research and innovation, strengthening health systems, and supporting the Global Health Initiative, which emphasizes investment in the health of women and girls.

Innovations in Male Circumcision
The New York Times (January 30) and TIME magazine (February 1) featured innovations that are making male circumcision procedures faster, cheaper, and safer in Africa, including the Shang Ring, which EngenderHealth is researching in Kenya.


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Is CEDAW Making a Difference in Women’s Rights and Equality?
A United Nations committee will convene in Geneva, Switzerland, from February 13 to March 2, to review the progress in implementing the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) in countries that are party to the treaty. To date, the United States remains one of only seven nations (along with Iran, Palau, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, and Tonga) that have not ratified CEDAW, a landmark international treaty aimed at upholding women’s human rights and equality around the world. Read more.

In the News <empty>

On February 7, The New York Times published a letter co-written by Mark Barone, EngenderHealth Senior Medical Associate, clarifying information that was published about the Shang Ring in a January 30 Times article.

On February 1, GlobeMed announced the honorary keynote for its April 13 summit, which will feature a conversation between EngenderHealth President Pamela W. Barnes and Pamela Angwech, co-founder of Gulu Women’s Economic Development and Globalization (GWED-G) in Uganda.

A January 13 article published in The Tide Online, Daily Trust, and other Nigeria media showcased the story of 30 women who received free treatment through EngenderHealth’s Fistula Care project.

EngenderHealth’s Fistula Care project wrote a January 9 guest blog for the White Ribbon Alliance on a partnership to promote respect in maternity care.

A January 6 post on the Circa Joy Lynn blog featured the CONDOMIZE-ing ICASA 2011 project, a collaborative prevention programming effort (including EngenderHealth) that was implemented during the conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

A January 4 article by the Daily Trust quotes Dr. Adamu Isah, Deputy Country Director of Nigeria for EngenderHealth, about our work to train surgical teams to repair fistula for Nigerian women.





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