Reaching postpartum women with access to contraception is a top priority for PSI and many other organizations. If women conceive again within 18 months, they will face significantly increased risks of poor maternal and infant health outcomes. Experts estimate that if all couples in developing countries spaced their pregnancies by 24 months or more, maternal deaths around the world would decline by 32% and childhood deaths by nearly 10%.((Cleland, J, Bernstein, S, Ezeh, A, Faundes, A, Glasier, A, Innis, J. 2006. “Family planning: the unfinished agenda,” Lancet, 386(9549):1810-27.)) In developing countries, more than 220 million women—15% of all women of reproductive age—have an unmet need for contraception.((Singh, S & Darroch, JE. 2012. Adding It Up: Costs and Benefits of Contraceptive Services: Estimates for 2012. Available at: http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/AIU-2012-estimates.pdf)) Unmet need for contraception is even higher (65%) among women in the first year postpartum, when the health risks of pregnancy are greatest. ((Ross JA, Winfrey WL. “Contraceptive use, intention to use and unmet need during the extended postpartum period,” International Family Planning Perspectives. 2001. 27(1):20–27.))
Postpartum intrauterine device (PPIUD) services afford women the option of a highly effective, long-acting reversible contraceptive (the copper IUD) before being discharged from a health facility following childbirth. Other advantages of the PPIUD are that it is safe for women living with HIV, doesn’t interfere with breastfeeding, and lasts up to 12 years if desired. PSI and other organizations have worked to include the PPIUD among the range of voluntary contraceptive options available to women after a birth in at least 30 countries.
Under the Support for International Family Planning Organizations (SIFPO) project funded by USAID, PSI published a technical brief on ‘Enabling the Healthy Spacing and Limiting of Pregnancies: Programmatic Approaches to Expand Postpartum IUD Access’. The brief introduces the need for expanded postpartum family planning options, reviews the advantages and disadvantages of the PPIUD, describes the components of successful initiatives to add PPIUD to the range of options for postpartum women, and illustrates three different models for PPIUD service delivery through case studies from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Guinea, Zambia and Pakistan.
- Populations Served
- General Population, Women, Women of Reproductive Age
- Health Areas
- Contraception, Maternal Health, Pregnancy and Childbirth
- Franchising for Health, Marketing Products and Services
- Resource Types
- Reports and Briefs
- English, French
- Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea, Pakistan, Zambia
- Contraceptive Implant, Intra-Uterine Device (IUD), Long-Acting Reversible Contraception, Post-Partum IUD Insertion, Short-Term Contraception