Family planning

Access programs

“Contraceptives are a blessing for our country.”
  • Nuy Talib, Health Extension Worker, Ethiopia

Family-planning programs

Family Planning goes far beyond the self-determined decision, if and when a woman is having a child. It is an important component for global health and development.
Family Planning goes far beyond the self-determined decision, if and when a woman is having a child. It is an important component for global health and development.

We have always taken our social responsibility as a leading supplier of hormonal contraceptives very seriously. For fifty years – and in more than 130 countries – we have been supporting family-planning programs which ensure that women all over the world can use modern contraceptives regardless of their income. In the 1960s we were one of the first companies to take action in this field. However, the needs of developing countries are many times higher than anything a single company could provide. This is why this mammoth societal task is today being tackled by a broad alliance of government institutions, NGOs and companies with a large number of programs.

In 2013, in cooperation with the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and various non-governmental organizations, we provided 130.2 million cycle packs of contraceptive pills, 9.2 million ampoules for one- and three-month injections, and 3 million contraceptive implants.

Shanty Town in downtown Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital. In 2011, 50 percent of Ethiopian city dwellers used contraceptives. The figure was much lower among the rural population at 25 percent.
Shanty Town in downtown Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital. In 2011, 50 percent of Ethiopian city dwellers used contraceptives. The figure was much lower among the rural population at 25 percent.

We manufacture the contraceptives specifically for these programs and sell them to the aid organizations at a low, but cost-covering price. Our clients then take care of the distribution of the contraceptives in cooperation with the local health authorities, either free-of-charge or for a small fee.

It is no simple task to ensure universal access to family-planning methods in developing countries. Many needy population groups live in regions with inadequate infrastructures and insufficient healthcare services. Local helpers can only estimate needs and must also contend with uncertainties such as economic crises, political upheavals or the cancellation of subsidies. This demands a great deal of flexibility from all partners.

In order to improve supplies for people in developing countries in the long term, we also need new and innovative concepts that work in ways that are largely independent of such external factors as subsidies and can ensure a permanently stable supply.

We are currently pursuing such innovative approaches in two initiatives: in the Contraceptive Security Initiative and the Jadelle Access Program.

Microsite – Ethiopia: Women and Contraception

Many women in Ethiopia want reliable contraception, but have no access to it. The situation of these women is slowly improving. In the course of reforming the health system, access to information about family planning was extended. Reporter Matias Boem visited Ethiopia and talked to healthcare professionals about the situation of the country.

Click here to read the full report:

Ethiopia: Women and contraception

Podcast

In collaboration with partners Bayer has committed to give women in developing countries the chance of using several methods of contraception. Learn more about how the situation of women in Ethiopia can be changed by self-determined family planning.