Contraceptive Technology Innovation
Illustrate & Advocate
Webinar: Expanding Contraceptive Choice
Join the Advancing Partners & Communities project, in collaboration with Family Planning 2020, the Implementing Best Practices initiative, and USAID's Office of Population and Reproductive Health, for the fourth in their webinar series, Expanding Contraceptive Choice: Intrauterine Devices (IUDs). This session will be held on Tuesday, April 24, 2018, from 9:00–10:00 a.m. EDT. Mark Hathaway of Jhpiego, Kate Rademacher of FHI 360, and Laura Glish of PSI will discuss IUDs and their in-country and programmatic experiences. Register today!
Photoshare: images that tell stories
Photoshare offers thousands of international public health and development images to users free of charge for nonprofit and educational use. Enhance your websites, presentations, blog posts, and publications with engaging photos of the work being done around the world to support innovations in contraceptive technologies.
Do you have photos of programs or research promoting family planning technology development? Contribute to our growing collection!
The Initiative for Multipurpose Prevention Technologies (IMPT) advances the development of MPTs to address the interlinked risks of unintended pregnancy and STIs, including HIV. Comprised of members from across disciplines and more than 15 countries, the IMPT is the central body that researchers, product developers, funders, policymakers, and advocates rely on for objective technical guidance and strategic planning related to MPTs. By facilitating interdisciplinary partnerships, the IMPT enables experts from across the family planning, HIV, and STI fields to strategize around the unique technological, market access, and regulatory challenges presented by developing combined prevention, thus refining the pathway to impactful MPT development.
Published by CAMI Health and the Resource Tracking for HIV Prevention Research and Development Working Group, Global Investments in Multipurpose Prevention Technology Research and Development (2016; PDF, 67.3KB) offers a clear visual of the impact of investment in MPTs. It clearly illustrates statistics showing increased funding, and briefly reviews research and development progress.
Family Planning Voices (#FPVoices), brought to you by K4Health and FP2020, amplifies the stories of those at the forefront of the global family planning community. If you have a story we should hear, please let us know.
“The earlier generation of female condoms faced struggles with introduction and usage. The earlier generation hasn’t been that easy for women and men, and it didn’t have a clear introduction strategy. Our focus of introducing this product to a specific segment of population is important—urban and young people in Zambia.” — Thoai Ngo, Deputy Director, Poverty, Gender, and Youth, Population Council (New York, New York, U.S.A.)
“To Laos, the implant was a completely new method, and the women had limited choices before that…. We also focused on the quality of counseling, because we see that it’s not enough just providing an implant. The women come back because they are not fully aware of the side effects, so for women to accept the eventual spotting and other side effects, the counseling is really important.” — Anna af Ugglas, Midwife, Technical Specialist, Skilled Birth Attendant, UNFPA (Lao People’s Democratic Republic)
"[S]ome 170 million women around the world today are using contraceptive technologies developed by the Population Council, including intrauterine devices and intrauterine systems and implant technologies. So when you think maybe a quarter of the people in the world are using those technologies and they are the most effective technologies that women choose to have when they have access to a full range of methods, I think that’s something to be incredibly proud of." — Julia Bunting, President, Population Council (New York, New York, U.S.A.)
"Through our projects, we’re introducing five new contraceptive methods in Zambia, Malawi, Madagascar, and we’re potentially going to be going to a country in West Africa....All five of those, with the exception of the LNG IUD, are woman-controlled methods which allow women to start and stop using the method when they want to and avoid the need for negotiation with male partners." — Kelly Culwell, Chief Medical Officer, WomanCare Global, Chief Medical Officer, Evofem (San Diego, California, U.S.A.)
“Family planning, including correct and consistent female or male condom use, saves lives by reducing the number of unsafe abortions, STIs/HIV, and unintended pregnancies. FC2 Female Condom has added to the method mix and provides pleasure and protection from pregnancy and STIs/HIV in one package.” — Maya Gokul, Training Manager in Sexual and Reproductive Health for The Female Health Company (Durban, South Africa)
“[W]e’re excited about the potential to expand the range of contraceptives that women have access to, such as Sayana Press, which may mean that one day women will be able to self-inject and won’t have to wait in line for hours to get their contraceptive shot. I think that’s a window into the future, where new methods are not necessarily provider-dependent and have the opportunity to reach multiple users across many contexts.” — Nomi Fuchs-Montgomery, Deputy Director, Evidence and Innovation for the Family Planning Strategy, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (Washington, DC, U.S.A.)
Asking questions, looking for answers
PATH's reproductive health technologies team works with users and research partners to develop and refine protection options that speak directly to needs and circumstances of diverse individuals: those who need non-hormonal contraception, those who seek dual protection from HIV/STIs and pregnancy, those who want discreet protection, and those who prefer methods that can be used without seeing a health care provider. Current products and technologies include the Woman’s Condom, the SILCS Diaphragm, microbicide applicators, and injectable contraceptives in the Uniject™ injection system.
The Subcutaneous DMPA Access Collaborative is a three-year initiative working to accelerate scale-up of DMPA-SC, while strengthening health systems and markets for family planning. The initiative provides health ministries and country partners with a range of support, including dedicated technical assistance to integrate the product alongside other methods into national FP programs. The Access Collaborative is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation and is implemented by PATH and John Snow, Inc.
The Male Contraception Initiative supports education, advocacy, and funding for reversible, non-hormonal family planning options for men. It includes information on current methods, prospective options under study, perspectives on the family planning landscape, and links to other organizations and professional groups interested in advancing male contraceptive choice.
The Contraceptive Technology Innovation (CTI) Exchange, coordinated by FHI 360, provides a platform for partners to share information and resources that support contraceptive research, development, registration, and introduction with an emphasis on expanding access in low-resource settings. It includes information about early- and late-stage contraceptive technologies that are under development, resources on product testing and quality assurance, international regulatory requirements, and strategies for product introduction. CTI Exchange also hosts a vibrant blog and resource library, to which users are welcome to contribute.
Women who want to prevent infection with HIV and other STIs as well as pregnancy often find their choices are limited to condoms, which can be difficult to negotiate with partners and may not be practical for women and couples who want to have children. The Population Council is developing two ARV-based vaginal rings to prevent sexual transmission of HIV and other STIs, as well as unintended pregnancy:
- The MZC ring was designed to prevent the acquisition and transmission of HIV and other STIs. It is intended for 90 days of use by women who want continuous protection from HIV and other STIs.
- The MZCL ring, which also contains the contraceptive levonorgestrel, is intended for women who want the continuous protection from HIV and other STIs delivered by the MZC ring with the added benefit of a contraceptive to prevent unintended pregnancy.
The Value of Contraceptive Research and Development
In this short video, the Population Council's Dr. John Townsend talks about how developing safe, effective and acceptable contraceptive methods can contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and reduce the number of unintended pregnancies. He discusses vaginal rings, injectable contraceptives and contraceptive methods for men in a down-to-earth, accessible manner.