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Expanding Access To Reproductive Health Services Integral To Comprehensive Zika Response

Huffington Post: Accelerating Progress on Zika Through Better Family Planning
Ward Cates, president emeritus; Kathleen Shears, senior science writer; and Rose Wilche, director of research utilization, all at FHI 360

“…The spread of Zika in the Americas adds urgency to the need to help all women — and their male partners — avoid unintended pregnancies. … Placing the burden of protecting unborn children from the virus’s effects solely on women who have limited reproductive rights and contraceptive options is discriminatory and unsustainable. Expanding access to reproductive health services must be part of a comprehensive response to the Zika virus … By integrating these five approaches into the response to Zika [– expanding contraceptive options, improving access to family planning services, engaging men, supporting youth, and changing gender norms –] we can begin to provide women and couples in the Americas with the family planning services they need to protect the health and well-being of their families” (2/10).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.