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New York, UNFPA, 1980 Jul. 77 p.An overview of the examples of project types funded by the United Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA) are presented along with a list of approved projects on women, population development, and a partial list of pending projects with particular reference to women. In choosing these examples of the UNFPA supported projects, the primary objective was to provide the reader with an indication of the wide range of project activities supported by the Fund. The following projects are reviewed: maternal and child health care and family planning; special programs for women; basic population data collection; population dynamics; formulation and evaluation of population policies and programs; implementation of policies and programs; communication and education; and related population and development activities in the 1980's. The UNFPA is increasingly working to include women in the development and strengthening of maternal and child health family planning systems--their management and evaluation, and including the development and application of fertility regulation methods. It is helping countries find ways and means for the reeducation of men and women on the importance of shared responsibility and authority in family planning decisions. Examples of approved maternal and child health care and family planning projects in Algeria, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Brazil, Costa Rica, Egypt, Jordan, Kenya, Morocco, Somalia, and the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen are briefly described. To ensure increased participation of women and their contribution to population/development related activities, the Fund created a new category of special programs for women. Programs in this category are generally classified as "status of women."
New York, UNFPA, May 1980. 66 p.Review of present status of activities of UNFPA with a view to setting new priorities for support of further UNFPA projects. 106 projects were selected for review, each satisfying the criterion of either addressing women specifically, or having women as the main focus. Of these 68 were selected as being representative of Direct Women's Projects (DWP)--these tended to be research oriented, and included many global projects. 32 were designated Indirect Women's Projects (IWP); these were more training oriented. Both groups were highly likely to be country specific and to have a fair number (29%) of action programs. From a historical perspective, the 2 World Conferences in 1974 and 1975 marked an increase in the number of women funded projects to 47 from a preconference level of 17. The postconference period also emphasized research action, communication and information projects. Part of the thrust during the postconference period was towards involving women more intimately in the national population and development process and to include in its scope the socioeconomic as well as the family status of women. In spite of this progress, the review uncovers the need for development in some areas: 1) basic and applied research on this issue; 2) widening the scope of investigation to include the complex interrelationships of women, population and development; and 3) creation of a data base which ensures easy access to relevant information on projects and findings, for UNFPA as well as agencies, governments and organizations generally.
Resolutions and decision adopted by the World Conference of the United Nations Decade for Women: Equality, Development and Peace, Copenhagen, Denmark, 14-30 July 1980.
[New York], UN, 1980 Aug 14. 56 p. (A/CONF.94/34/Add.1)The resolutions and decisions adopted by the World Conference of the United Nations Decade for Women at their July, 1980 meeting addressed the following topics: family planning; improving the situation of disabled women of all ages; migrant women; elderly women and economic security; battered women and family violence; implementation of the World Plan of Action; role of women in preparation of societies for life in peace; data collection on women; drought control in the Sahel; assistance to Lebanese women; political participation of women in the international sphere; refugees and displaced women; International Center for Public Enterprises in Developing Countries (ICPE); International Conference on Sanctions against South Africa; situation of women in Chile and El Salvador; control of illicit drug traffic; strengthening women's positions in the UN; international drinking water supply and sanitation decade; development assistance; elimination of discrimination; extreme poverty; equality in education and training; condemnation of South African aggression against the People's Republic of Angola; assistance to Saharawi women; assistance for the reconstruction of Nicaragua; health and well-being of women of the Pacific; integration of women in development; women and nutritional self-sufficiency; prostitution; apartheid and women in South Africa and Namibia; and the situation in Bolivia.
Programme of action for the second half of the United Nations Decade for Women: equality, development and peace.
[New YOrk] UN, August 13, 1980. 61 p. (A/CONF.94/34)The 3 objectives of the United Nations Decade for Women, equality, development and peace, were reaffirmed at meetings and conferences subsequent to the Mexico City world conference on the status of women in 1975. Equality is interpreted as meaning not only legal equality, but also equality of rights, responsibilities, and opportunities for the participation of women in development, both as beneficiaries and as active agents. Development is interpreted to mean political, economic, social, cultural, and other dimensions of human life, including physical, moral, intellectual, and cultural development. Improvement of women's status requires action at the national and local levels and within the family. Peace and stability are prereqiesites to development. Peace will not be lasting without development and the elimination of inequalities and discrimination at all levels. Imperialism, colonialism, neocolonialism, zionism, racism, racial discrimination, apartheid, hegemonism, and foreign occupation, domination, and oppression must be eliminated. It must be recognized that the attainment of equality of women long disadvantaged may demand compensatory activities to correct accumulated injustices. The joint responsibility of men and women for the welfare of the family in general, and the care of children in particular, must be reaffirmed.
Women, population and development, statement made at the World Conference of the United Nations Decade for Women: equality, development and peace, Copenhagen, Denmark, 15 July 1980.
New York, N.Y., UNFPA, . 5 p. (Speech Series No. 56)The World Population Plan of Action adopted in Bucharest in 1974 and the World Plan of Action adopted at the Mexico Conference in 1975 had one common goal--the full integration of women in the development process. Women today play a limited role in many national communities. If this role is to be strengthened and expanded, it will be necessary to focus on eliminating discrimination and removing obstacles to their education, training, employment and career advancement. Within this framework, UNFPA has given support to projects in 5 specific areas: 1) education and training in health, nutrition, child care, family planning, and vocational skills; 2) increasing participation of rural women in planning, decision-making and implementation at the community level; 3) income generating activities, such as marketing, social service occupations, and in the legal, educational and political systems; 4) educating women about their social and legal rights; and 5) widening women's access to communication networks. Between 1969 and 1979, approximately US$22 million was provided by UNFPA to projects dealing with the status of women. Projects in areas such as nutrition, maternal and child health services and family planning received more than US$312 million, which constitutes more than 50% of the total UNFPA programs.
The food, population and development equation, statement made at Southeastern Dialogue on the Changing World Economy, Atlanta, Georgia, 25 October 1980.
New York, N.Y., UNFPA, . 8 p.The 1st type of assistance asked for from developing countries is the collection of basic data. The 2nd type of program is family planning. Countries must formulate their family planning themselves based on assessment of needs. The 3rd area that has evolved is that of population dynamics--the study of demographic variables and their consequences. The 4th area is the field of communication and education to support family planning and population programs. The 5th area is in population policies. Finally, there is the residual category of special activities concerned with youth, women and the aged. Population, therefore, represents a broad core area of 5 to 6 categories. The UNFPA is a voluntary organization which provides assistance only to developing countries. The projections of the UN indicate that, as a result of efforts in population, there is for the 1st time in the history of mankind a decline in the population growth rate of developing countries. Nevertheless, mankind must be prepared for an additional 2 billion people by the turn of the century. Population efforts in the end must aim at the stabilization of total world numbers to enable individuals to develop to their full capacity and to improve the quality of life for all.
Population Bulletin of the Economic Commission for Western Asia. 1980; (19):69-80.The author cites problems in the definitions of different categories of economic activity and employment status which have been made by the UN. The term "casual workers" has never been clarified and these people were described as both employed and unemployed on different occasions; there is also no allowance for the term underemployed in the UN classification. The latter term, he concludes, is not included in most censuses. The UN in its Principles and Recommendations for Population Censuses, discusses sex-based stereotypes which he states are based on a set of conventions that are arbitrary, irrational, and complex. However on the basis of the UN rules it is possible to divide the population into 3 categories: 1) those who are economically active (black), 2) those who are not active (white), and 3) those whose classification is in doubt (gray). In developed countries most people are either in the black or the white area and the amount in the gray area is small, but in developing countries the gray area may be the majority of the population. In the Swaziland census no attempt was made to provide a clear picture of employment. In view of the complexity of the underlying concepts, the decisions as to whether a person should be classified as economically active or not should be left to the statisticians, not the census enumerators.
Equality of educational opportunities for girls and women. Report of a Meeting of a Consultative Panel for Asia and Oceania 1-8 October 1979.
Bangkok, Unesco Regional Office, 1980. 173 p. (BKS/80/RHM/140-500)A meeting held in Bangkok in October 1979 identified obstacles to be overcome if women and girls are to have equal access to education at all levels in Asia and Oceania, and had as a goal to strengthen collaboration between the UN and other agencies within the framework of the UN Decade for Women. Although no countries studied reported official government discrimination against girls and women in education, all stated that fewer girls participate in educational activities and that a major obstacle is in the attitudes of parents and communities. Dropout and wastage is greater among girls than boys and is very severe in Bangladesh, Nepal, and Pakistan; in countries where total enrollment is low there is the greatest difference in the boy/girl ratio. Forces that inhibit girls' schooling include social changes such as new kinds of employment, parents' requirement that girls help in the home or field and desire to spend what little money is available on the boy's schooling, early marriage, shortage of female teachers, and lack of parents' literacy. Programs designed to overcome inequalities are limited. In India, there is a program to provide universal education to all boys and girls between 6-14 years of age, and scholarships exist to train and provide housing for women teachers. Other countries' efforts have met with little success, but special efforts are being made to provide nonformal education for older girls and women to include literacy, numeracy, home managment, child care, health, sanitation, nutrition, and skill development for productive employment. Pakistan's program aims at serving primary level girls whereas those in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Thailand, and Pakistan aim at older girls and women. The traditional "Mohalla" girls' education program in Pakistan has recently added, wtih government support, homemaking and other areas of training to its religious curriculum. Suggestions for improvement include: 1) flexible school hours, 2) proximity of day care centers and pre-schools to primary schools, 3) making available opportunities for earning while learning, 4) devise curricula drawn from real life experiences of girls and women, 5) obtain more women teachers, 6) provide boys with learning experiences in "girls'" subjects, 7) reorganize expenditures to benefit girls and women, and 8) encourage nongovernment organizations which enhance female status to deal with educational programs.
New York, Foreign Policy Association, 1980 Feb. 64 p. (Headline Series 248)This essay concerns the place of women in the modern world from both an historical and contemporary perspective. Beginning in the 1970s attention was directed towards the importance of women in the social, economic, and political development of nations. Through ancient and medieval times, several alternatives to traditional roles were chosen by women: celibacy, urban craft communes, and hermits. In the 19th century, the emergence of new socioeconomic doctrines concerning women occurred. Between 1880-1900 5 transnational women's organizations were born: World Young Women's Christian Association, World Women's Christian Temperance Union, International Council of Nurses, General Federation of Women's Clubs, and the Inter Council of Women. In England the 1st appeal for votes for women was published in 1825; in the U.S. the women's suffrage movement began in 1848. By 1965, the International Cooperation Year was organized by the United Nations. In 1975 the United Nations Decade for Women was approved (1975-85). Progress made by women up to the 1980s includes: 1) a voluntary fund for the United Nations Decade for Women ($9 million in contributions), 2) establishment of an International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of women in the Dominican Republic, 3) an international convention to outlaw discrimination, 4) increasing aid to women in developing countries, and 5) increasing participation of women in the United Nation's international foreign ministries. Although full statistical documentation of women's status in the world are lacking, several calculations indicate that in 1978, 1/3 of the world's work force were women, women earn less than men, and women's political participation is greater in developing countries than in developed countries. Problems will continue to exist in the future. The women's work force in all developed countries was 42% of the world total in 1950. By 1975 it had fallen to 36% and is expected to shrink to less than 30% by year 2000. American women are no model for emulation by the rest of the world. Women are also paid less now in comparison to the past.
Conclusions of the International Medical Advisory Panel (IMAP) on DMPA at its meeting on 14th October 1980.
London, England, IPPF, . 4 p.The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) supplies 400,000 3-monthly injections of depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA) each year; this use is estimated to prevent between 30 to 100 deaths per year. Up to 10 million women have used the drug at some time, and more than 1 million and a quarter use it currently. DMPA is registered as a therapeutic agent in cancer treatment in nearly all countries and as a contraceptive agent in over 80 developed and developing countries. The supply of DMPA has never kept pace with the demand in developing countries. Present information fails to indicate that DMPA causes endometrial cancer. It is too early to know if it will always prevent it. Both the WHO and the Biometrics and Epidemiological Methodology Advisory Committee of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration found no evidence of an increased risk of disease of the uterine cervix in women on DMPA. No evidence of increased breast cancer has been found in humans on DMPA. Investigations conducted in Chile, Egypt, Iraq, and Thailand have found that DMPA may increase both milk production and the duration of lactation. The question of possible consequences of the transfer of the steroid to the breast-feeding infant has yet to be resolved. The only clinical metabolic effect attributed to DMPA is weight gain.
People. 1980; 8(3):18-20.In Kenya there are now 10,000 women's groups which are officially registered by the government and thus eligible for assistance from the Women's Bureau. A visit to the local group of 60 women in Kambu provides an example of both the courage and the potential of these groups. Initiated in 1976, the group's 1st effort was to plant coffee trees for each member. The next activity was making pottery and growing vegetables and meeting every Thursday afternoon. In 1979 the group applied to the Women's Bureau for assistance and was given over $1,000 to build a pigsty and buy some pigs. This was followed by a shop built for 6,000 shillings from which to sell the sisal baskets and mats which the group makes. The current objective is to raise about 30,000 shillings for a meeting hall, with a store, office and canteen. Family planning was not at the forefront of this group's activities. Nyeri, 1 of the best developed districts in Kenya, is also the site for the 1 experimental project where family planning information and services have been introduced simultaneously with income generating activities to several women's groups. The objective is 3-fold: to promote family planning by integrating it with other activities from the start of the project; to include voluntary motivational work by members of the groups; and to improve the status of members. 10 groups are involved in the project, part of the International Planned Parenthood Federation's worldwide program for Planned Parenthood and World Development. After 1 year of operation, family planning practice had increased markedly, with over 70% of women under 45 using contraceptives in 3 of the villages. There was much evidence showing that many members were actively promoting the family planning idea among their friends and neighbors. The integration of activities has been shown to have increased family planning acceptance. The problem is that with over 5000 requests for help in 1981, The Women's Bureau is only able to provide resources to some 600. At present, the Women's Bureau only has $1 million to spend.
Re: Depo Provera: a critical analysis, Stephen Minkin, Women & Health, Vol. 5:49-69, Summer, 1980 [letter]
Women and Health. 1980 Winter; 5(4):85-7.The readers of "Women and Health" and the American public deserve to hear the other side of the argument in regard to Depo Provera. This physician, who has been responsible for the operation of a large family planning program in northern Thailand for 17 years, has been personally responsible for the administration of over a million injections of Depo Provera to almost 100,000 women, for a total usage of over 240,000 woman years. Many of these women have used this method for 10 years or longer. Surveillance of all family planning patients goes on continuously, with particular emphasis on the users and former users of depomedroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA), the active component in Depo Provera. A large and unbiased component of this surveillance is the Chian Mai component of the worldwide, multicentered, 5-year case control World Health Organization study of homronal steroid contraception. At McCormick Hospital in Chiang Mai, clinic records have been maintained on every family planning acceptor since the program began in 1963, and every DMPA acceptor since the start of this method in 1965. The research shows the following: a method failure rate on the average of only 1 unintended pregnancy in every 142 women using the DMPA 3-month injection method for a full year; a good return to fertility rate with the outcomes of pregnancies and deliveries being normal; and a rate of congenital anomalies not significantly different from that observed in former pill or IUD users or in non-contracepting mothers. There has been no increase in endometritis, endometrial cancer, inhibition of milk supply of nursing mothers, or detectable harm to the infants of mothers receiving DMPA injections. The alleged "marked increase in breast and cervical cancer rates in Chiang Mai, Thailand," as indicated by Minkin in his testimony before the Congressional Committee on September 9, 1980, is a misinterpretation of a WHO report and is contrary to fact. There has been no indication that women on DMPA or their nursing infants suffer an increased incidence of infections or cancers of any kind.
Washington, D.C., Agency for International Development, Office of Women in Development, 1980 Dec. 45 p. (Contract AID/otr/147-80-76)Of all of USAID's various projects, income generating programs attract the most interest. Women's income generation includes any self-supporting project where benefits accrue to women participants from sale of items for money, from employment for wages, or increased produce. Projects which include planting trees to increase fuel or fodder supply, conserving soil, using appropriate technology, or eliminating waste, may benefit participants either in income or in acquisition. Poor women in India are paid in precooked food. Selecting the right project for the right group of people is the key to success. Specific considerations include the following: 1) products being supplied to the market; 2) available economic, natural, and skill resources; 3) any social organization which includes the identified group of women; 4) what social welfare needs have the highest priority; and, 5) how can the political structure help or hinder the identified group's economic participation and/or success? An insufficient resource base, market and management skills have been identified by many developers as the weakest aspect in women's projects. For small businesses the most important questions are as follows: what is the market; why is the project needed by the market; what are the steps from obtaining raw materials until the profits are distributed or reinvested; what are the potentials for growth; what is the outside expertise needed; and, how will the outside expertise be obtained and paid?
Activities of the Special Program of Research, Training and Development in Human Reproduction, World Health Organization in the field of long acting contraceptives.
In: Bangladesh Fertility Research Program. Workshop on Injectable Contraceptives: Noristerat, Dacca, Bangladesh, April 25, 1980. [Dacca, Bangladesh, BFRP, 1980]. 70-80.Following a brief introduction to the World Health Organization (WHO) Special Program of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction, established in 1972, focus is on what has been achieved thus far with long-acting injectable fertility regulating agents based on steroidal hormones and possessing a duration of action of at least 1 month. Over the last 20-year period, several estrogen-progestin combinations have been developed as monthly injectable contraceptives. The Special Program has initiated a series of clinical pharmacological studies aimed at developing new and improved estrogen progestin injectable formulations. 1 preparation, composed of norethisterone enanthate (50 mg) plus 5 mg of estradiol valerate, has shown promise in preliminary clinical studies. 3 progestogen only preparations with a duration of action of several months have been tested clinically: clormadinone acetate, depo-medroxyprogesterone acetate and norethisterone-enanthate. The 1st clinical trials utilizing the heptanoic acid ester of norethisterone raised considerable hopes, for no pregnancies were observed in 70 highly fertile women given the drug every 90 days. In a WHO trial preliminary data on Depo-Provera (DMPA) bleeding irregularities were responsible for the discontinuation of 9.3 subjects/100 women-years; prolonged amenorrhea accounted for the termination of 11.5 subjects/100 women years. There are several ongoing studies to evaluate the effects of the injectables on users. Norethisterone enanthate, although not possessing the same degree of effectiveness as DMPA, when adminstered every 3 months, remains an attractive injectable because of its lower incidence of amenorrhea.
A preliminary pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic evaluation of depot-medroxyprogesterone acetate and norethisterone oenanthate.
Fertility and Sterility. 1980 Aug; 34(2):131-9.2 populations attending WHO centers, one in Sweden and one in India, participated in a comparative, pilot trial of 2 increasingly popular injectable progestin-only female contraceptives, Depo-Provera and Norigest. The purpose of the study was to assess the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties of the 2 formulations (depot medroxyprogesterone acetate and norethisterone enanthate). Differences were found between Swedish women and Indian women in their reactions to the 2 drugs: 1) Norigest was detectable in blood samples a significantly shorter time after injection of the agent in Indian women than in Swedish women; this difference was not apparent with Depo-Provera. 2) Although there was no difference at the 2 centers in the time of ovulation return for subjects receiving Norigest, 0 of 4 Swedish women ovulated more than 156 days after Depo-Provera injection, whereas all 4 Indian women ovulated within 73 days of Depo-Provera injection; in the Swedish women, the levels of medroxyprogesterone were undetectable at time of return to ovulation, whereas Indian women had levels of .6 ng/ml when ovulation resumed. 3) In both cultures, Depo-Provera users had significantly more episodes of bleeding and spotting than Norigest users. This preliminary report emphasizes the variety of responses possible to injection of different contraceptive progestins among various populations and points to the need for further culturally comparative studies.
New Scientist. 1980 Sep 25; 87(1220):945-6.Women in Bangladesh are under pressure to participate in a mass program that uses injectable contraceptives. The reason is that the big aid donors, particularly the World Bank, are pressuring Bangladesh to show quick results in its family planning program. In many areas of Bangladesh, the women who are sterilized or on injectables receive 6 kg of wheat a month, plus oil, powdered milk, and fish meal. These incentives are taken from the United Nations World Food Program. United States law bars the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) from supplying Depo-Provera because it has been banned in the United States as it causes cancer in animals. As there are no restrictions preventing United Nations agencies from supplying potentially dangerous drugs, the United Nations Fund for Population Activities provides Depo-Provera to Bangladesh. 1/3 of the women suffer unacceptable side effects from the Depo-Provera, particularly irregular menstruation. 5% have serious bleeding. With Depo-Provera, women cannot stop and permit the side effects to go away; they have the unexpected problems for the 3-month duration of the shots.
Draper Fund Report. 1980 Oct; (9):19-20.WHO (World Health Organization) and a number of professional, national, regional, and other international organizations recently intensified efforts to discourage the practice of female circumcision still extant in several African countries and in isolated areas of the Arabian Peninsula, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Female circumcision is an operation frequently performed on females, between the ages of 5-10, in accordance with religious and cultural traditions. The operaton involves the complete or partial removal of either the clitoris prepuce, glans clitoridis, the clitoris, the labia minora, and labia majora. The operation can result in serious psychological and health problems for the young girls. Immediate complications include surgical shock, hemorrage, infection, tetanus, and damage to the urethera or anus. Late complications include infertility, keloid formation, dermoid Cyst dyspareunia, pelvic infection, and pregnancy complications. In 1976 WHO focused special attention on the problem and in 1979 the Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office of WHO included a discussion of the problem in the agenda of a Seminar on Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women and Children. Seminar participants recommended that countries where female circumcision was still practiced should 1) abolish the practice by statute if necessary; 2) establish national commissions to deal with the problem; and 3) educate the public about the dangers of female circumcision. Somalia recently established a national commission on the problem, and the Cairo Society of Family Planning developed a set of recommendations for combating the practice.
World Conference of the United Nations Decade for Women: equality, development and peace, Copenhagen, Denmark, July 14-30, 1980.
New York, UN, 1980. 32 p. (A/CONF. 94/9)This report reviews and evaluates efforts at the national level to implement the world Plan of Action for the Implementation of the Implementation of the Objectives of the International Women's Year and is based on replies of 86 governments to questionnaires prepared by the Advancement of Women Branch in the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs. It contains an analysis of the progress made and obstacles overcome in the field of health. Using as indicators increases in female life expectancy and declines in maternal and infant mortality rates, improvements have occurred in the health status of women. However, wide disparities are seen between high and low socioeconomic groups, between rural and urban women, and between minority groups and the rest of the population. Lack of financial resources is a major obstacle, compounded by inflation. The excessive physical activity of working rural women not only precludes their participation in health programs but also adversely affects their health. Additional problems are inadequate training and supervision of health administrative personnel, a lack of defined policies, and a lack of coordination between agencies. Social, religious, and cultural attitudes that no longer have validity, lack of political commitment, and an inadequate perception of the long-term health benefits of family planning, rather than its demographic aspects, restrict access to family planning for many groups of women.
New York, United Nations Institute for Training and Research, 1978. 216 p.This monograph discusses the question of equality of the sexes and the male-female relationship, with emphasis on the effect that increasing the number of women in policy and decision-making in the United Nations (UN) would have on improving the situation of women worldwide. For a number of years, the UN Commission on the Status of Women had stressed the importance of women having political rights, influence and power, and yet the UN itself had paid little attention to women in its policymaking organs and secretariats. Statistics show that the number of posts at the professional and higher levels in the UN system as a whole held by women had remained virtually unchanged in recent years (16.0% in June 1974; 15.8% in December 1975; 16.5% in December 1976). While there had been a slow but perceptible increase in the percentage of women at the professional and higher levels in the UN Secretariat and related offices since 1972 (18.5% in 1972; 20.9% in December 1976), it had not risen again to the 21.7% achieved in 1971. Also, not one of the organizations or agencies in the UN system was headed by a woman, and generally, the higher the level, the fewer the women. For women to be fully integrated into international decision-making, more women, particularly at the senior levels, must be integrated into the: 1) secretariats of the organizations of agencies of the UN system; 2) the Permanent Missions and delegations appointed by member states of the UN; and 3) those parts of national governments having an influence on policy at the international level.
In: Jelliffe DB, Jelliffe EF, Sai FT, et al., ed. Lactation, fertility and the working woman. London, International Planned Parenthood Federation, 1979. 39-44.Conventions drafted by the ILO to be submitted to governments of member states concerning maternity protection (maternity leave, health care, the right to resume employment) and provisions for working women to nurse their infants (facilities, paid breaks) are discussed. The number of states ratifying the conventions is reported, and various degrees and sources of protection and provision are described. Arrangements for maternity protection and nursing range from full coverage at community expense (social security), to special agreements made individually with employers, to very little support of any kind. The author deems matters concerning maternity protection and breastfeeding to be important for society as a whole as well as for working mothers and their children.
MARYLAND STATE MEDICAL JOURNAL. 1980 May; 29(5):68-9.In response to the growing public demand for non-hospital sterilization services, the Planned Parenthood Clinic in Baltimore began providing vasectomy services in April, 1971. Between 1971-1979, 4117 vasectomies were performed at the clinic under local anesthesia. Prior to vasectomy the patient is given a medical exam and a medical history is obtained. The patient is also interviewed by a counselor. Vasectomies are generally performed on Friday afternoons, and follow-up appointments are made until a negative semen analysis is obtained. The clinic has performed 73 minilaparotomies. Patients who wish to have a minilaparotomy must make 4-5 visits to the clinic. During the first visit the patient is seen by a counselor. During the 2nd visit a medical exam is given and a medical history is obtained. Blood, urine, and gonorrhoea tests are performed and a pap smear is obained. The counselor then explains all the risks involved in the procedure and an appointment for the operation is made if the patient wishes to continue. Operative procedures include: 1) inserting a Hulka tenaculum sound; 2) administering a local anesthesia; 3) making a 2-5 cm incision; and 4) performing a Pomeroy ligation. The operation takes 20-30 minutes and the patient is usually discharged 2 hours later. The patient is told to call the physician at any time if she experiences any difficulties and to return for a follow-up visit 2-4 weeks later.
PEOPLE. 1980; 7(2):22.Recent studies have not turned up any negative findings on Depo Provera, the controversial injectable contraceptive which is currently banned in the U.S. 2 large studies, in the U.S. and England, found no increased risk of breast cancer in Depo Provera users. A 3rd study, in fact, found a decrease in the incidence of breast cancer in postmenopausal users of Depo Provera. Doubt has been cast on the earlier studies with female beagles which found breast cancer increased through association with Depo Provera. Further studies have also shown no increased risk of endometrial cancer in Depo Provera users. The International Federation for Family Health has issued a report advising the use of Depo Provera. It is an especially useful contraceptive for developing countries because 1 injection gives 3 months' protection and cannot be wrongly used.
Intercom. 1980 Jan; 8(1):14.Guyana, a former British colony of about 830,000 population, in the 1970 Census had a composition of 52% East Indian, 31% African, and the balance Amerindian, Portuguese, Chinese, and mixed descent. The crude birth rate is believed to have peaked in 1957-59 at 44.5/1000; by 1978 the birth rate had dropped to about 28.3/1000. The World Fertility Survey of 1975 found that a total fertility rate of 7.1 children/woman in 1961 dropped to 4.4 in 1974. The largest decline in childbearing was in the over 30 age group and the under 20's. Knowledge of contraceptive methods is high; over 95% of a sample of ever-married women had heard of some method. Contraceptive usage is not as high as knowledge; of women exposed and with a partner, 38% said they were contracepting. The pill (11%) and female sterilization (10%) were the 2 most popular effective methods. Usage was lowest among women in common law marriages and visiting unions. Guyanese women overall preferred 4.6 children. Women age 20 thought 3.4 ideal; those over 40 reported 5.8 children as their choice. African women, who marry later than Indian women, preferred more children, 4.8, compared to 4.6 for Indian women. Rural women wanted 4.9 children while urban women wanted 4.3. The crude birth and death rates combine to give a rate of natural increase of 2.1% per year.