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Creating common ground in Asia: women's perspectives on the selection and introduction of fertility regulation technologies.
Geneva, Switzerland, World Health Organization [WHO]. Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction, 1994. 45 p.Participants from Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, and other countries with which WHO's Special Programme of Research, Development, and Research Training in Human Reproduction collaborates and in which women's groups are active attended the Asian regional meeting on Women's Perspectives on the Research and Introduction of Fertility Regulation Technologies in February 1991. The meeting aimed to establish a dialogue between women's groups and researchers, policymakers, and family planning service providers. Other objectives included defining women's needs and viewpoints on reproductive health and fertility regulating technologies and identifying appropriate follow-up activities which would form a basis for regional networking. WHO's Special Programme of Research, Development, and Research Training in Human Reproduction published a report of the meeting. The meeting consisted of plenary sessions, group work, and keynote presentations. Presentations addressed women's realities, policy considerations, research, and service provision. Topics concerning women's realities were community attitudes towards fertility and its control, women's autonomy, health status, and family planning services. Presentations on policy considerations covered: taking users into account, objectives of family planning programs, participation in decision making, and men's responsibility. Redefining safety and acceptability as well as research on female barrier methods were addressed during presentations on research. The report presents proposals for action for Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, and the Philippines. Meeting participants reached a consensus on recommendations addressing policy, research, services, and WHO. The report concludes with a list of participants and a list of papers presented.
INTEGRATION. 1991 Sep; (29):4-5.The work of the Soviet Family Health Association (SFHA) is described. Created in January, 1989, the organization boasts 25 state-paid workers, and as of June 1991, membership of 15,000 corporate and individual members. Individual annual membership fee is 5 rubles, and entitles members to counseling and family planning (FP) services. The SFHA works in cooperation with the Commission on Family Planning Problems of the USSR's Academy of Sciences, and has been a member of the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) since 1990. Association activities include lectures for students, newly-weds, adolescents, and working women on modern contraceptive methods; research on attitude regarding sex, sex behaviors, and the perceived need for effective contraception; clinical trials of contraceptive suitability for women; and the training of doctors in FP and contraceptives. Problems central to the SFHA's operations include insufficient service and examination equipment, a shortage of hard currency, and the small number of FP specialists in the country. Solutions to these obstacles are sought through collaboration with the government, non-governmental organizations in the Soviet Union, and international groups. The SFHA has a series of activities planned for 1991 designed to foster wider acceptance of FP. Increased FP services at industrial enterprises, establishing more FP centers throughout the Soviet Union, and studying FP programs in other countries are among Association targets for the year. Research on and promotion of contraceptives has been virtually stagnant since abortion was declared illegal in 1936. Catching up on these lost decades and remaining self-reliant are challenges to the SPHA.