sexual and reproductive health
Reproductive health, which addresses the reproductive processes, functions and systems at all stages of life, is aimed at enabling men and women to have responsible, satisfying and safe sex lives, as well as the capacity and freedom to plan if, when and how often to have children.
The relationships between HIV and sexual and reproductive health are well recognized. The overwhelming majority of HIV infections are sexually transmitted or associated with pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding. Underlying social and economic factors such as poverty and gender inequality contribute to both HIV transmission and poor sexual and reproductive health. By linking initiatives for sexual and reproductive health and HIV multiplies opportunities for preventing and treating sexually transmitted infections including HIV, providing family planning and maternal and child health services, and providing treatment and care for people living with HIV.
Key concerns of reproductive health include the treatment and control of sexually transmitted infections that increase the vulnerability to HIV infection and the prevention of mother-to-child transmission of the virus. Another important focus for reproductive health services is adolescents, who have special needs for care and support during the transition to adulthood and the initiation of sexual relationships – needs that require an even more urgent response since the emergence of AIDS. Yet for a variety of reasons, the reproductive health of young people is particularly neglected and many millions lack the information, skills and equipment to prevent contracting or passing on HIV or other diseases or to avoid unwanted pregnancy.
In 1994, the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) outlined a Programme of Action (the Cairo Consensus) focused on empowering women and meeting people's needs for education and health, including reproductive health. Since then, the international community has actively developed and monitored a series of policies, strategies and actions to actualize the goals of the Cairo Consensus. Central to these policies is addressing the impact of HIV on individuals and on development overall.
The latest from the GCWA
10 Feb, 2010|
The overlap between injecting drug use and sex work is a driving force in the so-called “feminization” of Asia’s HIV/AIDS epidemic. Between 70 and 80 percent of women injecting drug users (IDUs) are involved in some kind of sex work, according to Ratna Mardiati, a former director of the Drug Dependence Hospital (RSKO) in East Jakarta with 14 years’ experience dealing with injecting drug users. “They are not formal sex workers but they sell their bodies when they need money,” she says. Other sources of structural inequality, such as the gender wage gap — which sees Indonesian women earning on
8 Feb, 2010|
Netherlands / Policy: Linking sexual and reproductive health and rights and HIV prevention is key says Dutch AIDS Ambassador Marijke Wijnroks
The Netherlands’ AIDS Ambassador Dr Marijke Wijnroks recently visited UNAIDS Secretariat to meet with Michel Sidibé UNAIDS Executive Director and senior management of the Joint Programme. We took the opportunity to ask Dr Wijnroks about her role as her country’s AIDS Ambassador, and discussed some of the key issues in the Dutch approach to the global issue of HIV. UNAIDS: Dr Wijnroks, you were appointed Dutch AIDS Ambassador in July 2009. What do you see as your role in the global response to HIV?
1 Feb, 2010|
Kampala — IT was really painful for Anita to come to terms with the fact that she was HIV-positive. "At 23, fresh from university, my life was just beginning," she says regrettably. "At first I thought of going on an infection spreading spree, but I changed my mind. "It is not worth it. Recklessness will kill you faster because you may acquire other strains or opportunistic infections in the process," she remembers the counsellor's words. "I decided to build a wall against any possible relationship with a man," she discloses. But five years down the road, many things changed for Anita.
20 Jan, 2010|
Women in Europe and Central Asia preparing for Vienna 2010 and beyond is a new website, launched in January 2010, primarily - but not exclusively - for women across Europe and Central Asia who are working on sexual and reproductive health issues affecting women and girls across this region. This new website is designed to be a multi-lingual website, to enable women from the many different language groups across the region to share with one another the issues we face, the visions we hold and the work we are all doing to make these visions a reality. For more information, www.womeneurope.
14 Jan, 2010|
Mediante un trabajo colaborativo entre instituciones públicas y privadas, el 74% de las embarazadas –portadoras del VIH/sida– de nuestro país evitaron contagiar el mal a sus hijos, mediante una profilaxis oportuna. “Importantes resultan los logros obtenidos a nivel del acceso a la profilaxis para la prevención de la trasmisión perinatal del VIH.
1 Jan, 2010|
IPPF Happy, Healthy and Hot: A young person’s guide to their rights, sexuality and living with HIV
22 Dec, 2009|
Kampala — Ten months after being re-launched, a new brand of female condom has proven popular among a test group of Ugandan women, according to a study. FC2 was launched in February; the government stopped distributing the original female condom, FC1, in 2007 on the grounds that women had complained it was smelly and noisy during sex. "The new condom has improved features and will enable women to have a procedure within their control to give them more choices for prevention [of HIV and unwanted pregnancies]," said Vashta Kibirige, the coordinator of the condom unit at the Ministry of Health.
20 Dec, 2009|
WASHINGTON (WOMENSENEWS)--Ice was broken here in early December among three powerful groups of South Asian women. About 20 female parliamentarians, journalists and staff members of nonprofit groups in South Asia left Washington, D.C., with strategies they believed could reduce the current specter of women losing their homes after caring for spouses who died of AIDS, as well as aiding HIV-positive women who are unable to reach rural clinics and teens who aren't aware of how to prevent the infection. They were also carrying with them a loose agreement to work together within their region to sto
10 Dec, 2009|
Bauchi — Chairman of the Bauchi State Agency for the Control of HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis/Leprosy and Malaria (BACATMA), Rilwanu Muhammad, has said of about three million people living with HIV/AIDS in Nigeria, 60 per cent are women just as majority of them live in the rural areas thereby making it very difficult for them to access adequate medical attention. Mohammed stated this while speaking to newsmen shortly after outlining his Agency's plan of action for next year. He said statistics available to his Agency indicated that over 13,000 people are currently infected with the HIV/AIDS virus in
4 Dec, 2009|
The HIV/AIDS prevalence among expectant mothers in Namibia is decreasing since 2002, Prime Minister Nahas Angula said this week. “It is indeed very encouraging to see that our efforts over many years of fighting HIV/AIDS in Namibia are indeed bearing fruits,” he said. Angula said this during the annual commemoration of World AIDS Day.