Lockdowns could lead to 7 million unintended pregnancies: UN  

Around 450 million women across 114 low and middle-income countries use contraceptives, UNPFA has released alarming data on how COVID-19 lockdowns affect women and girls across the world


NH Web Desk

The COVID-19 pandemic seems to be a long war for mankind and the estimated human cost could be extraordinary.

Ongoing lockdowns have posed major disruptions to health services during the COVID-19 pandemic

47 million women in low and middle-income countries are unable to use contraceptives

This may lead to 7 million unintended pregnancies in the coming months, according to the UN

The United Nations Population Fund and Agencies estimate major crisis for women across the world

The number of women facing unintended pregnancies could 'skyrocket" by  millions due to COVID-19

Gender-based violence and other harmful practices, could also see a major rise due to the crisis.

"The new data shows the catastrophic impact that COVID-19 could soon have on women and girls globally," UNFPA Executive Director Natalia Kanem said.

"The pandemic is deepening inequalities, and millions more women and girls now risk...

... losing the ability to plan their families and protect their bodies and their health," Kanem said.

The economic and physical disruptions  could have vast consequences for the rights and health of women and girls

Globally, around 450 million women across 114 low and middle-income countries use contraceptives, the study said.

6 months of lockdowns could result in 7 million unintended pregnancies, an additional 31 million cases of gender-based violence," it said.

The pandemic has caused significant delays in programmes to end female genital mutilation and child marriage

This may result in an estimated two million more cases of FGM over the next decade

These delayed programmes, could result in an estimated 13 million more child marriages over 10 years.

There also will be 31 million additional cases of gender-based violence during the same period

The projections offer an alarming view of the future that could confront women and girls

The UNFPA said, it's important to prioritise the needs of women and girls of reproductive age during the pandemic.

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