Advancing family planning

Promoting and extending the influence of family planning through promulgating information, advocacy and services, with particular reference to the under-served. Includes the overturning institutional barriers obstructing the provision of effective family planning programmes.
The small family is rapidly becoming the cultural norm everywhere. More than 60% of all fertile women and men are properly using safe and effective contraceptive methods. Most of the unmet need for family planning emanates from the 40-50% of people who are marginalized in the development process; who do not benefit from existing health, education and employment opportunities; and those who needs remain largely unsatisfied through the traditional services of the family planning associations.
Emphasize maternal and child health; obtain equal rights for women; promote and defend sexual and reproductive rights; involve committed, competent, skilled volunteers and staff; work cooperatively with all interested governmental and non-governmental parties; assist in the establishment of associations in countries without adequate education and service provision; provide guidance and technical support to family planning associations to increase institutional capacity, focusing on countries with weak managerial or service infrastructures; conduct needs assessments to identify education and service gaps and advocate the filling of these gaps; identify segments of the population in greatest need of primary health care, nutrition and reproductive and sexual health care and make service provisions for these groups; complement the service delivery activities of the government, commercial sector and NGOs and expand the range of reproductive and sexual health services available; integrate family planning with economic, educational and social programmes for the benefit of women; introduce models of reproductive and sexual health services that meet popular demand and advocate for the implementation of such services as part of government policy; work toward the inclusion of family planning services in existing health services through accelerated recruitment and training of paramedical personnel, traditional birth attendants and community health workers; develop innovative approaches for increasing coverage of services, including pilot projects, testing alternative service delivery approaches, training of non-conventional service providers, and information and educational campaigns.

Since 1960, the family planning rate in the developing world has risen from about 10% to 55%, and average family size has fallen steeply in every region except Africa. Despite this progress, there are an estimated 120 million women in the developing world who do not want to become pregnant but who are not using family planning, and as a result, one pregnancy in every five is unwanted. The world average use of family planning is 57%. At the regional or group level, percentage use of family planning is: 14% in Sub-Saharan Africa; 44% in the Middle East and North Africa; 40% in South Asia; 74% in East Asia and the Pacific; 51% in Central America and the Caribbean; 65% in South America; 72% in Industrialized countries. Some countries in the developing world have notably high percentage family planning rates. They include: China (83); Mauritius (75); South Africa (50); Turkey (63); Sri Lanka (62); Thailand (66); Costa Rica (75%); Cuba (70); Argentina (74). According to the family planning effort index devised by the Population Council and the UN Population Fund, 12 developing countries increased their ratings by 30 points or more from the beginning to the end of the 1980s. Most of these countries started from a very low effort level in the early 1980s, and 9 of those nations are in Africa. The 12 nations and their respective points increase on the index are as follows: Botswana (48); Iran (46); Burkina Faso (41); Honduras (38); Guinea (35); Ghana (34); Niger (33); Syria (33); Zambia (33); Central African Republic (32); Lesotho (31); Madagascar (31).

According to the World Bank, total spending on family planning in developing countries amounts to US$4,700 million a year, of which 80% is borne by developing countries and 20% borne by external assistance. In addition, family planning programmes have never received more than 2% of official development assistance.

Globally, to meet what is currently perceived as the unmet need for family planning, demand will have to increase from approximately 300 million users to 550 million by the year 2000.
Increasing population
Constrained by:
Opposing population control
Health Care Birth control
Type Classification:
D: Detailed strategies
Related UN Sustainable Development Goals:
GOAL 3: Good Health and Well-being