Media Advisory

UNFPA introduces do-it-yourself contraceptive injection in Myanmar

27 June 2017

YANGON — For the first time, a do-it-yourself contraceptive injection will available in Myanmar. By the press of a finger, a woman can inject it at home and avoid unwanted pregnancy for three months. The project is a collaboration between UNFPA and the Ministry of Health and Sports.

The initiative aims to reach women whose need for contraceptives is the greatest: Women living in remote and conflict affected areas, including ethnic minorities and internally displaced people in Chin, Kachin, Kayin, Mon, Rakhine and Shan. In the first phase, 3000 midwives in 60 townships in will be trained to support the roll-out.

UNFPA has invested over US$1 million in the initiative, which will reach more than 200,000 women in 2017. The contraceptive will be offered free-of-charge through midwives and auxiliary midwives in the public health system. Non-government controlled areas and displaced women will be reached through ethnic health organizations and NGOs, including MSI and PSI.

The large-scale initiative helps women and families prevent unwanted pregnancies and space their children as they choose. In Myanmar, one in six women (16 per cent) cannot access the contraceptives they want to avoid or delay pregnancy. Family planning also helps reduce maternal death. Every year, 2,800 Myanmar women die from complications related to pregnancy and childbirth, including unsafe abortion, which is the third leading cause of maternal death in Myanmar.

Women who choose family planning are healthier. Their families are better off financially, and their children are healthier and receive better education, triggering a cycle of prosperity that carries into future generations. The advent of modern contraceptives has enabled women to protect themselves from unwanted pregnancy. Women are now more than ever able to balance their family planning needs with their career aspirations and work commitments. Women’s access to choice in family planning has been critical for gender equality and women’s empowerment all over the world.

Injection administered by a health worker every three months is the most popular contraceptive method in Myanmar. The new option to self-administer means that women who cannot easily access a health facility will have the choice to self-inject at home every three months. Recent data shows that 98 per cent of the 52 per cent of women who exercise family planning prefer modern contraception, with over half of these (55 per cent) choosing the injection.

“The do-it-yourself contraceptive injection allows women in Myanmar to take control of their own bodies – to decide if, how often and when to have children. This empowers women to reach their full potential, to seek and keep better jobs, and to contribute more to their families and country”, says Janet Jackson, UNFPA Representative for Myanmar.

The media are invited to the following event:

WHAT: Introduction of the first do-it-yourself contraceptive injection in Myanmar
WHO: H.E. Dr Myint Htwe, Union Minster, Ministry of Health and Sports;
Janet Jackson, UNFPA Representative for Myanmar
WHEN & WHERE: Tuesday 27 June at 8.30 – 10.30 am, Hotel Max, Nay Pyi Taw

 

For more information, please contact:
Yenny Gamming; Tel: +95- (0)9 2604 00005; gamming@unfpa.org
Si Thu Soe Moe; Tel: +95- (0)9 4500 57730; soemoe@unfpa.org