“When I became pregnant again, for the fourth time, I tried to terminate the pregnancy but I failed to do so. Then I decided that after delivering this baby I would go for a tubectomy.” Shumitra Saha, Jessore District, Bangladesh
As difficult as it is to comprehend trying to terminate your own pregnancy, the tragic truth is that Shumitra’s story is not unusual. The unmet need for family planning is extremely high among women in the postpartum period. More than 90% of postpartum women in developing countries desire to space or limit a subsequent pregnancy, yet 61% are not using a family planning method.
This PPFP movement began one year ago in Chiang Mai, Thailand, where a global, action-oriented meeting, titled “Accelerating Access to Postpartum Family Planning in Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia” was held with key international stakeholders to catalyze learning into action as countries developed specific action plans and built consensus with local partners and policymakers.
Since then, the movement has grown to include new countries and new partners along the way. We have seen a broadened recognition of how well-implemented, national PPFP programs that deliver family planning services to postpartum women in the first two years after birth using integrated channels can save the lives of millions of women and children.
Simply put, PPFP is a critical lifesaving intervention that helps ensure that all women can receive the information and services to decide whether, when, and how many children they want to have and to plan their futures. An acceleration of PPFP progress will move us towards our FP2020 goal of reaching an additional 120 million women and girls by the year 2020 with modern contraception that meets their needs and rights, and thus towards our broader goal of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.
That’s why FP2020, in technical partnership with Jhpiego, launched a new web resource aimed at providing you with the information you need to learn and act on postpartum family planning.
We hope you will utilize this new PPFP resource, check back frequently for updates and consider joining us to #ActionPPFP and save millions of lives.
PS. You can read more about Shumitra’s story on Family Planning Voices and don’t forget to sign up for WHO’s June 17 webinar on The Medical Eligibility Criteria Wheel for contraceptive use: Development, new features, adaptation approaches!