State Of World Population Report 2022- UPSC Current Affairs

World Population

Enhance your UPSC exam preparation with our daily edition of the Current Affairs Dialog box wherein we discuss crucial topics that have relevance to the UPSC CSE syllabus. In our today’s edition, we will talk about the State of World Population Report 2022.

For Prelims: Findings of the State of World Population 2022 Report, United Nations Population Fund’s

For Mains: Issues Related to Women, Population and Associated Issues

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Why in the News?

United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) has released its annual flagship report “the State of World Population (SoWP) Report 2022”.

  • Theme: “Seeing the Unseen: the case for action in the neglected crisis of unintended pregnancy”

Probable Question

What are some challenges in addressing maternal mortality in India? Do you think the ongoing government interventions address these challenges effectively? Critically examine. 

Key Findings of the Report

  • Women’s sexual and reproductive health rights: Only 57% of women are able to make their own decisions over their sexual and reproductive health and rights
  • Lack of Safe, Modern Methods of Contraception: Globally, an estimated 257 million women who want to avoid pregnancy are not using safe, modern methods of contraception.
    • In 47 countries, about 40 per cent of sexually active women were not using any contraceptive methods to avoid pregnancy.
  • Rising Unintended Pregnancies: Between 2015 and 2019, there were roughly 121 million unintended pregnancies occurred globally each year.
    • The rate of unintended pregnancy did decline between 1990 and 2019, from 79 to 64 for every 1,000 women aged 15 to 49.
    • Over 60% of unintended pregnancies end in abortion and an estimated 45% of abortions are unsafe, causing 5% to 13% of maternal deaths.
  • Abortions: Globally, 29% of all pregnancies — both intended and unintended combined — end in abortion. This amounts to an estimated 73 million abortions per year, on average, in 2015–2019.
    • 45 per cent of all abortions performed globally are unsafe.
    • Unsafe abortions hospitalize about 7 million women a year globally and cause 5 to 13 per cent of all maternal deaths, one of the leading causes of maternal death.
    • In developing countries, unsafe abortions cost an estimated $553 million per year in treatment costs alone.
  • Rape related pregnancy: Nearly a quarter of all women are not able to say no to sex.
    • Contraceptive use is 53 per cent lower among women who have experienced intimate partner violence.
    • Studies show that rape-related pregnancies are equally or more likely to occur than pregnancies from consensual sex.
  • Humanitarian Emergencies: In humanitarian emergencies, such as the ongoing war in Ukraine, many women lose access to contraception and/or experience sexual violence.
    • Some studies about humanitarian emergencies, in general, have shown that over 20 per cent of refugee women and girls will face sexual violence.
    • An estimated 4.8 million unintended pregnancies will occur in Afghanistan by 2025 as a result of health system disruptions and gender inequality.
    • In the first 12 months of the COVID-19 pandemic, the estimated disruption in contraceptive supplies and services lasted an average of 3.6 months, leading to as many as 1.4 million unintended pregnancies.
  • Teenage Pregnancy: 13 per cent of women in developing countries begin childbearing before they turn 18.
    • Three-quarters of young women have their first child at the age of 14 and the second before turning 20.
  • India’s Performance: Unsafe abortions are the third leading cause of maternal mortality in India, and close to 8 women die from causes related to unsafe abortions each day. Between 2007-2011, 67% of abortions in India were classified as unsafe.
    • One in seven unintended pregnancies in the world takes place in India.
    • India’s maternal mortality ratio (MMR) has improved to 103 in 2017-19, from 113 in 2016-18. This is according to the special bulletin on MMR released by the Registrar General of India.

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Key Factors that can Contribute to Unintended Pregnancies

  • Lack of sexual and reproductive health care and information
  • Contraceptive options that don’t suit women’s bodies or circumstances
  • Harmful norms and stigma surrounding women controlling their own fertility and bodies
  • Sexual violence and reproductive coercion
  • Judgmental attitudes or shaming in health services
  • Poverty and stalled economic development
  • Gender inequality

Suggestions

  • The key priorities for India are to address the unmet need for family planning/contraceptives and improve access to safe abortion services including medical methods. 
  • Expanding the reach and range of reversible contraceptives can prevent early pregnancy and pregnancies at short intervals jeopardising maternal and newborn health.
  • There is a need to invest in research to better understand the drivers and impacts of unintended pregnancy.
Unintended Pregnancy: A pregnancy that occurs to a woman who was not planning to have any (more) children, or that was mistimed, in that it occurred earlier than desired. 
About United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA):

UNFPA is the United Nations sexual and reproductive health agency.

UNFPA is formally named the United Nations Population Fund. The organization was created in 1969.

UNFPA calls for the realization of reproductive rights for all and supports access to a wide range of sexual and reproductive health services – including voluntary family planning, maternal health care and comprehensive sexuality education.

Report: State of World Population Report.

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