WHOUpdate to ‘s landmark family planning handbook, launched Tuesday, educates health workers on protecting access to family planning services in emergencies and provides policymakers with the latest information on contraceptive options .
“Family planning promotes self-realization, empowerment, and health and well-beingand reduces maternal and child deaths through the prevention of unwanted pregnancies and unsafe abortions,” said Pascale Allotey, WHO Director for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights.
Building on lessons learned, it is also expanding counseling for women and young people at high risk of contracting HIV.
“A vital resource”
Experience from recent epidemics shows that family planning services can be seriously compromised in an emergency.
During the initial stages of the COVID-19[feminine] pandemic in 2020, approximately 70% of countries reported disturbances to these vital services – increasing the risk of unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections.
Manual advocates continuation of family planning support services during epidemicsincluding through broader access to self-administered contraceptives, pharmacy distribution, and multi-month supplies.
“This updated family planning handbook is a vital resource, helping health workers to help contraceptive users around the world make informed choices about the contraceptive options that are right for them,” said the senior official. WHO.
Self-administered contraceptives include condoms, birth control pills, some diaphragms, spermicides, and more recently the self-injection option of a progestin-only contraceptive, called DMPA, which can now be safely given just under skin rather than muscle.
Many women prefer private, non-intrusive injectables that only require action every two or three – making this option likely to increase uptake.
” The update the recommendations in this manual show that almost all family planning methods can be used safely by all womenand that as a result, all women should have access to a range of options that meet their unique needs and goals in life,” said lead author Mary Gaffield.
High risk tune-up
For the first time, the 2022 edition includes a dedicated chapter to guide family planning services for women and adolescent girls at high risk of HIV, including people living in areas with high HIV prevalence and those with multiple partners sex or whose regular partner is living with HIV.
While only condoms protect against HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, all contraceptive options – with the sole exception of nonoxynol-9 spermicide – are now considered safe for women and young people at high risk of HIV as they have not been found to increase the risk of HIV transmission or of acquiring infection.
For people at high risk of contracting HIV, the manual states that testing, counseling and first-line clinical care and referral should all be offered as part of family planning services.
“Family planning services can be delivered safely and affordably so that, regardless of where they live, couples and individuals can choose from safe and effective family planning methods.” main author.
The manual also incorporates the latest WHO guidelines on cervical cancer and pre-cancer prevention, screening and treatmentall of which can be provided by family planning services; management sexually transmitted infections; and family planning in postabortion care.
Now in its fourth edition, the manual is the most widely used reference guide on the subject in the world, with over one million copies distributed or downloaded to date.
It is complemented by the Medical Eligibility Criteria Tool for Contraceptive Use, also downloadable as a Dedicated app.