According to the Lao Social Indicator Survey (LSIS II) launched in June this year, the use of modern contraceptive methods among married women aged 15-49 has increased from 42% in 2011 to 49% in 2017.
The unmet need for modern contraceptives among married women aged 15-49 has declined from 19.2% to 14.3%, and 75% of unmarried women aged 15-19 still do not have access to family planning.
This year marks the 50th anniversary of the 1968 International Conference on Human Rights held in Tehran, where family planning was, for the first time, globally affirmed to be a human right.
UNFPA has been supporting Family Planning in Laos since 1995 following the International Conference on Population and Development and good progress has been made in providing Family Planning information and services for many people, according to UNFPA Representative to Laos Frederika Meijer.
“Unfortunately, as we can see from the LSIS indicators, not EVERYONE is reached yet. In line with the Sustainable Development Goals, we should not leave anyone behind hence we need to strengthen our efforts,” said Meijer.
“Globally UNFPA has adopted a new Strategic Plan that aims to bring down unmet need and maternal death to zero, these transformative results steer our work everywhere including here in Lao PDR where we would like to see availability of Family Planning for everyone,” said Meijer.
“Together with United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), this year in the Lao PDR we celebrate World Population Day with the theme Family Planning for Everyone, because we want to simplify the understanding of family planning that it is not only for parents or couples, but for all people regardless of their sex, gender, backgrounds, social or economic status,” said Vice Minister of Planning and Investment Dr. Kikeo Chanthaboury at the World Population Day celebration in Vientiane.
“All couples and individuals have the basic right to decide freely and responsibly the number and spacing of their children and to have the information, education and means to do so,” said Dr Kikeo, echoing the tenets of the Tehran Proclamation.