[ Skip to Main Content ]
COVID-19: How We’re Responding

Media Center

What should the future of the #INGO sector be? EngenderHealth CEO @TraciLBaird is part of a @humentum_org-led cohort of INGO leaders discussing how the sector can shift to address issues of purpose, equity, power, and sustainability. Read more on @devex: http://ow.ly/X6ht50Gwncx

“This is truly a great step & proof that with a little political will, we can do a better job of saving the lives of girls & women in our region," said Maïfoux Nassirou, EngenderHealth's regional advocacy & partnership manager. #Benin #AbortionRights

http://ow.ly/QsEH50GvJEy

Meet Gayatri Menon from Tamil Nadu, one of our IAcTT Youth Champions. Want to know more about her? Join us on 24th Oct 2021, at 5:30 pm IST on the IAcTT insta page live!
@newconceptinfo @TheYPFoundation @EngenderHealth @MoHFW_INDIA @UNICEFIndia

Language influences culture, shifts power dynamics & drives social change. Principal Writer & Editor Amy Agarwal & @PathfinderInt SRHR Senior Technical Writer Liz Futrell share how their organizations are reimagining #globalhealth #communications.

https://bit.ly/GlobalHealthComms

The Namibian Parliament is holding the first public hearings on abortion in more than 20 yrs. We support the activists & allies demanding that the Abortion Act is repealed & replaced to guarantee the right to decide & end #abortion stigma. #LegalizeAbortionNA 1/3

IACTT Youth Champions have reached to many and still counting. We are overwhelmed by the great response for the initiative!
#IAcTT #YouthChampions #MillionShares

@TheYPFoundation @EngenderHealth @MoHFW_INDIA @UNICEFIndia @newconceptinfo

Thank you for supporting ⁦⁦@i_actt⁩ ⁦⁦@PurvaMantri⁩ ! #Unite2FightCorona https://www.instagram.com/p/CVIexd9juF0/?utm_medium=share_sheet

Did you miss @USAID_MOMENTUM's 2021 Progress Report? Check it out to see how MOMENTUM has helped improve maternal and child health and increase access to #familyplanning and #reproductive healthcare around the world. 👉 http://ow.ly/bIGz50Gtwym

In Côte d’Ivore, we’re collaborating with the Deputy of Cocody @yasminaouegnin & @CACi225 to propose & advocate for amendments to a draft law on the protection of survivors of domestic violence ahead of a National Assembly vote on October 26. #ProjetDeLoiAReviser #TousUnis

Meet Ishank Subudhi, an engineer by profession & also, one of our Youth Champions from West Bengal. He & his team have been reaching out to 1300+ people from semi-urban areas at all times with the IAcTT campaign's messages, online.
@newconceptinfo @EngenderHealth @TheYPFoundation

Load More...
April 28, 2020

Protecting Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Progress in a Pandemic

By Traci L. Baird

From the moment the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a global pandemic, EngenderHealth has recognized that our work and the work of our global partners on sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) will be more critical than ever.

Tanzania family

A family outside of a health center in Tanzania. Photo credit: EngenderHealth/Sala Lewis

During public health crises, resources are often pulled away from routine health services even though this is the time when people need them most to prevent pregnancy, address violence, and protect their sexual and reproductive health (SRH).

We have seen in our programs that COVID-19 is amplifying existing gaps and problems—of the unmet need for contraception, lack of choice or quality in health services, lack of access to hotlines and shelters, and lack of availability of services like fistula repair or cancer screening.

A report released by UNFPA has put magnitudes to these gaps. No longer are we only concerned about decreased access to contraception when economic realities mean more people are seeking to delay pregnancy; now, we are anticipating millions of additional women unable to use contraception, even in a best-case-scenario regarding the pandemic.

The report estimates that if the COVID-19-precipitated lockdowns have “medium health service disruption” and last 3 months, 23 million more women will not have access to desired contraception and will experience 600,000 additional unintended pregnancies, above the pre-pandemic levels of unmet need and unintended pregnancy. A 6-month lockdown with medium health system disruption, it estimates, would result in 4 million unintended pregnancies, above baseline levels.

EngenderHealth is working with our partner ministries of health as well as local and international NGOs to ensure that SRH services, including contraception, are considered essential and that they are provided safely. Additionally, we have shared clinical guidance and are working at the country level to support supply-chain efforts, dissemination of information to healthcare providers and communities, and creative options to reduce contact time for contraceptive services while offering a range of methods.

We know that during health and economic crises—especially those that keep people at home when their homes are not safe—there are surges in gender-based violence. UNFPA’s modeling anticipates 15 million additional cases of intimate partner violence (IPV) for every 3 months that countries are locked down due to the pandemic.

At the same time, the projection of a potential 13 million additional child marriages and 2 million additional girls experiencing female genital mutilation (FGM) during the decade that would otherwise not have occurred must stop us in our tracks and prompt us to work with local partners on programs to accelerate our work on gender and rights within the context of comprehensive SRHR.

EngenderHealth staff are confirming which local services for GBV and IPV survivors continue to operate to ensure that referral mechanisms are reaching functional services, and our partners are supporting health facilities in providing emergency care, including emergency contraception and post-exposure prophylaxis for HIV prevention.

We appreciate UNFPA’s leadership in raising awareness of the likely full impact of the pandemic on access to contraception and the risks of GBV, FGM, and child marriage. The projected loss of hard-won progress toward the Sustainable Development Goals related to health, gender equality, education, and reducing inequalities is tragic. But we have faced, endured, and risen above tragedy before.

EngenderHealth commits to joining our partners around the globe to draw on our collective experience to mitigate the impacts of the pandemic, and to develop and apply innovations to reestablish and accelerate progress on SRHR.

 

Related Links

The Guardian: ‘Calamitous’: domestic violence set to soar by 20% during global lockdown

 

Share this page: