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London, United Kingdom, IPPF, 2014 Nov. 8 p.This publication outlines how, following the London Summit on Family Planning in 2012, International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) has worked to engage governments, with the aim of building a conducive environment to reach the most vulnerable groups, no matter how remote their location, in order to reach the key goal of ensuring 120 million more women have access to family planning by 2020.
Policy brief on the case for investing in research to increase access to and use of contraception among adolescents.
Seattle, Washington, PATH, 2015 Mar. 4 p.This document outlines why governments and donors should invest now in research to help determine and implement the most effective and efficient ways to enable adolescents to access and use contraception. It summarizes the findings of a longer technical report.
Contemporary Politics. 2012 Jun; 18(2):186-199.Capacity-building has become a mainstay of many AIDS and public health programmes. This article examines its impact on civil society organisations and claims-making around citizenship, as these have been articulated through heterogeneous policy networks doing HIV prevention work. Drawing on a growing literature on the Foucauldian notions of biopower and governmentality, the genealogy of capacity-building as a globalised technology of governmentality is traced, examining its uses both at the international level and in Brazil. Brazilian civil society organisations have undoubtedly been transformed by their participation in networks carrying out capacity-building projects. While recognising these effects, the conflicts and productive tensions inherent to such networks are highlighted.
Guidance for evidence-informed policies about health systems: Linking guidance development to policy development.
PLoS Medicine. 2012 Mar; 9(3):e1001186.Contextual factors are extremely important in shaping decisions about health systems, and policy makers need to work through all the pros and cons of different options before adopting specific health systems guidance. A division of labour between global guidance developers, global policy developers, national guidance developers, and national policy developers is needed to support evidence-informed policy-making about health systems. A panel charged with developing health systems guidance at the global level could best add value by ensuring that its output can be used for policy development at the global and national level, and for guidance development at the national level. Rigorous health systems analyses and political systems analyses are needed at the global and national level to support guideline and policy development. Further research is needed into the division of labour in guideline development and policy development and on frameworks for supporting system and political analyses. This is the second paper in a three-part series in PLoS Medicine on health systems guidance.
Getting in line: Coordinating responses for children affected by HIV and AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa.
Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies. 2010 Jun; 5(Suppl 1):92-100.Only one in every eight households containing orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) in African countries received any support from an external source (UNICEF, 2008). This is a reflection of how governments, both rich and poor, have ignored obligations ratified in conventions to ensure the social protection of vulnerable children (United Nations, 1989). Consequently, a disproportionate proportion of the financial burden of care of vulnerable children is borne by affected families and communities. It is deplorable that vulnerable children are forced to rely on the charity of income poor relatives and community members (Wilkinson-Maposa et al., 2005; Foster, 2005b). This situation is likely to continue until governments adequately assume their responsibilities. In countries such as Botswana, governments have responded to the crisis of children and AIDS and consequently most households containing vulnerable children now receive external support (UNAIDS et al., 2006). The movement to establish national social protection schemes for vulnerable households is gaining momentum. If cash transfers become established nationally, they may alleviate suffering on a wide scale (JLICA, 2009). In that case, community groups and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that are currently responsible for implementing responses to support children affected by HIV and AIDS will still be needed to administer psychosocial and other services that are complementary to those provided by these schemes. It is vital that governments develop a central role in coordinating civil society responses and ensure that resources for vulnerable children are used more effectively. But most African governments have limited capacity to coordinate responses and have only recently engaged in this area that involves a few well-resourced international organisations, many local NGOs and innumerable community initiatives. This article reviews the responses of different sectors responding to the impacts of HIV/AIDS on children, and discusses how these may be better funded, coordinated and monitored, utilizing the findings from a study of civil society OVC initiatives and evolving national responses.
Geneva, Switzerland, UNICEF, Regional Office for CEE / CIS, 2008 Jan.  p. (Evaluation Working Papers Issue No. 12)This collection of articles by UNICEF brings together the vision and lessons learned from different stakeholders on the strategic role of monitoring and evaluation in evidence-based policymaking. These stakeholders are policymakers (as users of evidence) and researchers and evaluators (as suppliers of evidence). The use of strong evidence can achieve recognition of a policy issue, inform the design and choice of policy, forecast the future, monitor policy implementation, and evaluate policy impact.
MCN. American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 2010 Jan-Feb; 35(1):63.The purpose of this article is to describe recent initiatives designed to improve outcomes for Bolivian women and children. It discusses the high infant and maternal mortality rates of Bolivia and stresses the importance of the international community partnering with the Bolivian government and healthcare personnel to provide support and assistance in a coordinated fashion to make a difference in the health and well-being of women and children.
From advocacy to access: Bangladesh. 360 degrees advocacy: Strengthening a weak contraceptive supply chain in Bangladesh. Fact chart.
London, England, IPPF, 2009 Nov.  p.In Bangladesh, the IPPF Member Association, the Family Planning Association of Bangladesh (FPAB), worked with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to improve the dysfunctional supply chain. Results to date include: The Ministry of Health reactivated the Logistical Coordination Forum, a donor, government and civil society led group, to identify and solve blockages in the supply chain; Capacity building and training for staff in the Logistics and Supply Unit were increased; The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare committed to using government resources to make up the shortfall from declining donor contributions.
[Bangkok, Thailand], ITPC, 2007 Dec.  p.In the first section of the report, nine country teams provide first-hand reports on central issues related to AIDS service scale-up in their countries. Each demonstrates that increasing access to AIDS treatment brings not only better life and new hope, but also shines light on challenges and effective approaches to a spectrum of health, poverty, and human rights issues. In part two of this report, 14 national teams review drug access issues, and find that global and national processes for AIDS drug registration are burdened by inefficiencies, duplications, delay, and, in some instances, corruption. In many cases key ARVs, particularly newer and second-line therapies, are not yet registered in high impact countries - an administrative roadblock that puts lifesaving care out of reach for hundreds of thousands of people. The report makes a number of concrete recommendations to the key players who are responsible for making near universal access to AIDS treatment a reality by 2010. (excerpt)
Integration of human rights of women and the gender perspective: Violence against women. Letter dated 16 May 2003 from the Permanent Representative of Bhutan to the United Nations Office at Geneva addressed to the Chairperson of the Commission on Human Rights.
[New York, New York], Economic and Social Council, 2003 Jun 12. 3 p. (E/CN.4/2004/G/3)I wish to refer to Addendum 1 to your report to the 59th session of the Commission on Human Rights containing an analysis of developments in the area of violence against women at the international, regional and national level, and to provide the following additional information regarding the entry on Bhutan, with a request that these be reflected in the final report. Most national studies on gender show that Bhutan is relatively "gender-balanced" and that there is no overt gender discrimination. Bhutanese women enjoy freedom and equality in most spheres of life. In view of the general overall equality of women and men, no legislation explicitly prohibits discrimination against women. (excerpt)
[Geneva, Switzerland], United Nations, Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, 2003. 4 p. (E/CN.4/RES/2003/77)Guided by the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenants on Human Rights and accepted humanitarian rules, as set forth in the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and the Additional Protocols thereto. Reaffirming that all Member States have an obligation to promote and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms and to fulfil the obligations they have freely undertaken under the various international instruments. Recalling that Afghanistan is a party to several international human rights instruments and has obligations to report on their implementation. Recalling also the relevant resolutions and decisions of the Commission on Human Rights, the relevant resolutions and presidential statements of the Security Council, the reports of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict (S/2002/1299) and on women, peace and security (S/2002/1154) and the most recent resolution adopted by the Commission on the Status of Women. (excerpt)
Beijing betrayed. Women worldwide report that governments have failed to turn the Platform into Action.
New York, New York, Women's Environment and Development Organization [WEDO], 2005. 207 p.Beijing Betrayed is the fifth global monitoring report published by the Women's Environment and Development Organization (WEDO) assessing governments' progress in implementing the commitments they made to the world's women at the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, 1995. Beijing Betrayed brings together the diverse voices of women in some 150 countries in subregions across Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and North America, Latin America and the Caribbean and West Asia to influence the United Nations 10 Year Review of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action. This report presents women's realities - their concerns, experiences, perspectives and analyses - in the implementation process and contrasts sharply with the more formal and often abstract reports governments have presented. The reports presented here are a testimony to women as agents of change and give us cause for celebration. They show that women advocates everywhere have stepped up their activities since Beijing using the Platform for Action and other key global policy instruments to push governments into taking action. In every region of the world, women have taken the lead in crafting legislation and conducting public awareness activities to promote women's human rights, peace, and sustainable development. (excerpt)
Lancet Infectious Diseases. 2008 Jan; 8(1):14.A report from the International Treatment Preparedness Coalition (ITPC) warns that meeting the "near universal access target" to AIDS drugs access by the 2010 deadline will require an enormous effort by governments, global agencies, and drug companies. According to the report, which looked at AIDS treatment access in 14 countries, "scale-up is working but high prices, patent and registration barriers, and ongoing stock-outs are core issues impeding AIDS drug delivery". "The issues highlighted in this report are real and widespread", said Nathan Ford of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF; Johannesburg, South Africa). The HIV programmes run by MSF across the developing world are struggling against user fees, high drug costs, lack of human resources, and poor health infrastructure, he told TLID. The ITPC, a group of 1000 treatment activists from more than 125 countries, highlights that the high cost of antiretroviral drugs is a particular barrier in Argentina, China, and Belize. (excerpt)
Lancet Infectious Diseases. 2007 Nov; 7(11):705.An expert advisory group, convened by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), has concluded that it would be inadvisable to embark on a widespread pre-pandemic H5N1 vaccination programme in European countries at the present time. Pre-pandemic vaccines, currently being developed by several pharmaceutical companies, can be made ahead of the emergence of pandemic influenza virus, unlike "true" pandemic vaccines. However, experts have concluded that there remains too much uncertainty as to whether the H5N1 avian influenza virus, on which pre-pandemic vaccines currently under development are based, will ever be responsible for a pandemic. According to Johan Giesecke (ECDC, Stockholm, Sweden), "If there is an H5N1-based pandemic, the strategy of having stockpiled pre-pandemic H5N1 vaccines, even if the vaccines incompletely match the pandemic virus, may prevent more infections and deaths than waiting for specific "true" pandemic vaccines...however, there is no guarantee that the next human influenza pandemic will evolve from the current H5N1 avian influenza virus". (excerpt)
Lancet. 2007 Nov 24; 370(9601):1744-1746.The four papers in this Series called Who Counts? describe the state of the world's vital statistics, and the fact that few countries derive these from routine compulsory measures through civil registration. However, every country in the world has the capacity to produce useful economic data. Because of its particular interest in, and requirements for, demographic and epidemiological data, the health sector should raise similar expectations of national capacity to produce vital statistics. Unrepresentative, biased, incomplete, and often out-of-date, the world's vital statistics compare poorly with the detailed information available on every country's economy. The effort and expense of gathering and interpreting data on national income and trade balances are accepted costs of monitoring economic prospects in an international market. Health is arguably as important as economics, and establishing their mutual interdependence has made a big difference to the funding and attention that health attracts.Sen proposes mortality as an indicator of economic success or failure, but many countries are still making patchy and incomplete efforts to count lives and deaths, and to document how their people die. (excerpt)
The Global Campaign for the Health MDGs: Challenges, opportunities, and the imperative of shared learning.
Lancet. 2007 Sep 22; 370(9592):1018-1020.On Sept 5, the International Health Partnership (IHP) was launched by the UK, and on Sept 26, Women and Children First: the Global Business Plan for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health will be launched by Norway. These two new efforts, along with the Canadian Catalytic Initiative to Save a Million Lives, have been packaged as part of a broader Global Campaign for the Health Millennium Goals (MDGs). Such an explosion of proposals, which is meant to accelerate action for achieving MDGs 4, 5, and 6, should be welcomed by the world's health community. The proposals are further recognition of the continued commitment by high-income countries to address key health challenges in low-income and middle-income countries. Building on a decade of expanding work in global health, we can hope that these high-profile initiatives will sustain interest and address major obstacles to improving the health of the poorest people in the magnitude and time-frame demanded by the MDGs. Nevertheless, as is often the case with new policy efforts, the main operative aspects of the proposals and their likely consequences can be difficult to identify. We frame questions on five key issues that these announcements highlight. (excerpt)
Commentary: From scarcity to abundance: Pandemic vaccines and other agents for "have not" countries.
Journal of Public Health Policy. 2007; 28(3):322-340.The recent impasse between the Indonesian Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization (WHO) over sharing H5N1 viruses in return for access to affordable pandemic vaccines highlights slow progress in defining an antigen sparing vaccine formulation, developing licensing requirements that meet the needs of populations and obtaining government funding for vaccine trials. Currently, vaccine-producing countries would have difficulty producing enough doses for their own people and few doses would be left over for non-producing ("have not") countries. Yet within a few months of the onset of a new pandemic, several billion doses of live-attenuated and recombinant hemagglutinin H5 vaccines could be produced for "have not" countries, provided a new and disruptive system of "top down" management could be organized. In its absence, a "bottom-up" alternative that uses widely available and inexpensive generic agents like statins must be considered. The "have not" countries must continue to put pressure on WHO and leading countries to ensure that they will have access to the interventions they will need. (author's)
Health Policy and Development. 2004 Aug; 2(2):96-99.The World Food Programme (WFP) is the United Nations (UN) agency responding to humanitarian emergencies by delivering food aid to vulnerable populations worldwide. The protracted insurgency in northern Uganda resulted in the displacement of up to 1,619,807 people, largely women and children. The humanitarian situation among displaced persons in northern and eastern Uganda led to diminished coping abilities and increased food aid needs. Access to food through productive means varies but, on average, households can only access about 0.5 - 0.75 acres of land. Recent nutrition and health assessments conducted in Pader District, in Feb 2004 and in Gulu District, in June 2004, highlight high mortality rates of more than 1 death/10,000 people/day. While Global Acute Malnutrition (GAM) rates appear to fall within the normal range expected within African populations (<5% GAM), high mortality rates consistently highlight the severity of the health situation in the camps. The WFP Uganda Country Office currently implements a Protracted Relief and Recovery Operation (PRRO) and a Country Programme (CP). The PRRO targets Internally Displaced Persons in Northern Uganda through General Food Distribution (GFD) activities, school children, HIV/AIDS infected and affected households and other vulnerable groups. In partnership with the Government of Uganda (GOU), sister UN agencies, international and national NGOs and Community Based Organisations, WFP currently assists the 1,619,807 Internally Displaced Persons, (IDPs), including 178,741 school children in the Gulu and Kitgum, 19,900 people infected with or affected by HIV/AIDS in Gulu and Kitgum and more than 750 food insecure persons involved in asset creation. Whilst WFP and other humanitarian actors continue to provide relief support to the displaced communities of northern Uganda, it is clear that without increased security the crisis will continue. (author's)
Health Policy and Development. 2004 Apr; 2(1):30-32.On the eve of the 3rd millennium, stock was taken of PHC and health sector reforms. The results of a shocking failure of previously advocated goals were evident. Therefore a new set of goals and mechanisms were adopted under Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The MDGs are 8: on hunger, education, gender disparity, child mortality, maternal mortality, HIV/AIDS, safe drinking water and partnership. They have implications for multi-laterals as well as for national Governments. Multi-laterals are expected to implement unified and harmonized programmes. Governments are also expected to improve governance, respect the law and mobilise resources for social investment. Recent reviews do not show that much progress has been made. But perhaps it is still too early. What seems to be missing though is a powerful lobby for the implementation of MDGs. (author's)
Lancet Infectious Diseases. 2007 Jul; 7(7):439.The 2007 Group of Eight (G8) summit, which took place in Heiligendamm, Germany, on June 6-8, has been described by John Kirton (G8 Research Group, University of Toronto, Canada) as an "emerging centre of democratic global governance". Like many self-appointed elites, the G8 is an idiosyncratic club. The eight started as six in 1975 with a meeting in Rambouillet, France, of the heads of government of France, West Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, and the USA-the most economically powerful democratic nations. This annual forum for discussion of matters of mutual interest was joined by Canada in 1976, by the European Union in 1977, and by Russia in 1997. Although the G8 nations account for nearly two-thirds of world economic output, the Russian economy is not among the world's top eight, whereas China with the fourth largest economy remains outside the G8 club. (excerpt)
Third World Quarterly. 2007 Jun; 28(4):751-773.The achievement of women's equality is an elusive goal, especially in developing economies, where states have been unable or unwilling to protect and promote women's human rights and gender equality. Many argue that globalisation has heightened gender inequality. One response to this crisis is the United Nations corporate citizenship initiative: the Global Compact. This paper argues that the Global Compact has a strong gender equality mandate, which has not been fulfilled. The paper advances a number of reasons why this may be the case, including the lack of women's participation at many levels, the pervasive nature of women's inequality and the fact it may not be in the interests of Global Compact signatories to address this inequality. Despite the limitations of this voluntary initiative, it does have some potential to effect positive change. However, unless the pervasive and continued violation of women's human rights is addressed by the Global Compact, the claim that it is a viable new form ofglobal governance for addressing major social and economic problems is severely weakened. (author's)
Asia-Pacific Population Journal. 2007 Apr; 22(1):3-7.While the science of demography addresses the whole of the human population, substantive demographic research is most often focused on populations with common characteristics. For the last six decades the nation state has been the social unit that has dominated demographic research. The reasons for this focus make perfect sense. Nations define their populations in terms of citizenship and define the ways in which people will be identified in any effort to count the numbers. They have the authority, the interest and the resources to carry out collections of information about members of these defined populations. As members of the United Nations they collaborate with other nations to develop the methodological and technical tools used to analyse national population numbers in ways that are relevant to state policies and actions. In short, the nation is the foundation unit for understanding human population composition and growth. Global population numbers are estimated by compiling the information collected by nations. Interest in populations of units smaller than the nation also relies on national statistical collections and national definitions of component populations, but for most users of data the focus is on the nation, and not the units beyond or below that political entity. (excerpt)
Development and Change. 2007 Mar; 38(2):169-199.This article situates the politics of gender in Afghanistan in the nexus of global and local influences that shape the policy agenda of post-Taliban reconstruction. Three sets of factors that define the parameters of current efforts at securing gender justice are analysed: a troubled history of state-society relations; the profound social transformations brought about by years of prolonged conflict; and the process of institution-building under way since the Bonn Agreement in 2001. This evolving institutional framework opens up a new field of contestation between the agenda of international donor agencies, an aid-dependent government and diverse political factions, some with conservative Islamist platforms. At the grassroots, the dynamics of gendered disadvantage, the erosion of local livelihoods, the criminalization of the economy and insecurity at the hands of armed groups combine seamlessly to produce extreme forms of female vulnerability. The ways in which these contradictory influences play out in the context of a fluid process of political settlement will be decisive in determining prospects for the future. (author's)
Gender and Development. 2005 Jul; 13(2):57-69.In the world of feminist activism, the time is ripe for reflection and review. We need to ask why change is not happening, what works, and what is next. This article points to the fact that while women have made many gains in the last decade, policies that successfully promote women?s empowerment and gender equality are not institutionalised in the day-to-day routines of State, nor in international development agencies. We argue for changes which re-delineate who does what, what counts, who gets what, and who decides. We also argue for changes in the institutions that mediate resources, and women?s access, voice, and influence. We outline key challenges, as well as ways to envision change and strengthen the capacity of State and development organisations to deliver better on women?s rights. (author's)
ARROWs for Change. 2004; 10(2):1-2.The 2004 global and regional roundtables reviewing and monitoring progress of the Cairo Programme of Action (POA) implementation concluded that this document remains a critical comprehensive UN document which outlines an agenda and framework linking human rights principles with population and development, poverty eradication, social justice, gender equality, women's empowerment, sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) and NGO participation. Ten years into the POA, progress in implementation in the Asia-Pacific region remains poor. ARROW's eight-country regional monitoring study revealed that one million women have died unnecessarily in childbirth, pregnancy and unsafe abortion since Cairo. Only China has attained the goal of reducing maternal mortality by 50% by the year 2000. Nationally, the ICPD POA has not yet been clearly institutionalised in national development frameworks like women's development, health, population and in poverty. Although there has been significant progress in theregion in the area of violence against women and the creation of national machineries like ministries and commissions, women are still not able to exercise control over their reproductive and sexual lives due to the following barriers. (excerpt)