In news– The UNFPA has released the State of World Population Report(SWPR) 2022, titled “Seeing the Unseen: The case for action in the neglected crisis of unintended pregnancy”.
Key highlights of the report-
- It is an annual report published by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the sexual and reproductive health agency of the United Nations.
- Each edition of SWPR covers and analyses developments and trends in world population and demographics, as well as shedding light on specific regions, countries and population groups and the unique challenges they face.
- Each year, the report focuses on a particular theme and presents an in-depth analysis on the subject matter covered.
- The report of 2022 brings the spotlight to a critical theme: Expecting more: The preventable crisis of unintended pregnancy.
- It has found that though the rate of unintended pregnancy has declined, the global abortion rate is virtually unchanged, and is estimated at 39 per 1,000 women of reproductive age in 2015–2019.
- Globally, 29 per cent of all pregnancies — both intended and unintended combined — end in abortion.
- This amounts to an estimated 73 million abortions per year, on average, in 2015–2019 and where these abortions are unsafe, women risk short- and long-term morbidity and even death.
- Over 60% of unintended pregnancies end in abortion and an estimated 45% of abortions are unsafe, causing 5% to 13% of maternal deaths.
- The incidence of unintended pregnancy varies widely by region. There were about 35 unintended pregnancies annually per 1,000 women aged 15 to 49 years in Europe and North America, compared to 64 in Central and Southern Asia and 91 in sub-Saharan Africa, in 2015–2019.
- But there are wide disparities within regions, too. For example, the estimated unintended pregnancy rate was 49 in Niger but 145 in Uganda.
- It says that unintended pregnancies can result not only due to contraceptive failure and non-use of contraceptive services, but can also happen as a result of violence or coercion, and the vulnerability increases during crises and disasters.
- It added that only 57 per cent of women are able to make their own decisions over their sexual and reproductive health and rights.
- New UNFPA research (UNFPA, 2022) looking at 96 per cent of the world’s adolescent population, excluding China and high-income countries, found that, across the developing world, nearly one in three young women aged 20 to 24 years gave birth in adolescence, defined as ages 10 to 19.
- Means 13 percent of all young women in developing countries begin childbearing while still children, and these adolescents go on to account for a strikingly large portion of all adolescent births.
The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)-
- The United Nations Population Fund UNFPA, formerly the United Nations Fund for Population Activities, is a UN agency aimed at improving reproductive and maternal health worldwide.
- UNFPA was created in 1969, the same year the United Nations General Assembly declared “parents have the exclusive right to determine freely and responsibly the number and spacing of their children.”
- Mission: To deliver a world where every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe and every young person’s potential is fulfilled.
- Its work includes developing national healthcare strategies and protocols, increasing access to birth control, and leading campaigns against child marriage, gender-based violence, obstetric fistula, and female genital mutilation.
- It advises against reactionary policy responses, which can be extremely harmful if they violate rights, health and choices.
- It calls for prioritizing reproductive health and rights for all through access to information and services in the face of fertility and demographic shifts.