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Nandita Thatte

Dear IBP Colleagues,


The latest HRP newsletter from the WHO Department of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Research went live this morning: https://bit.ly/3tA0krW


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HRP News







Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights






Message from the director



Dr Ian Askew, Director, WHO Department of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Research including UNDP-UNFPA-UNICEF-WHO-World Bank Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction (HRP).


The unequal impact of COVID-19 across and within countries, social and economic groups is a daily reminder of what it truly means to build a fairer, healthier and greener world for all. HRP welcomes the WHO commitment to health equity at the heart of pandemic response and recovery. We are committed, in turn, to ensuring that no one’s right to sexual and reproductive health is left unclaimed.

Our new publication, Sexual and reproductive health interventions in the WHO Universal Health Coverage (UHC) Compendium, is a practical companion tool to WHO’s powerful UHC Compendium for assisting countries in prioritization and planning processes for determining benefit packages of health services for UHC. It collates all SRH-related interventions in the UHC Compendium as well as providing useful navigation tips for the Compendium website. Read more





What's New





Devastatingly pervasive: 1 in 3 women globally experience violence


Violence against women remains devastatingly pervasive and starts alarmingly young, shows new data from WHO and partners. Across their lifetime, 1 in 3 women, around 736 million, are subjected to physical or sexual violence by an intimate partner or sexual violence from a non-partner – a number that has remained largely unchanged over the past decade. Read more




Six priorities for women and health


Concrete action is needed to ensure women and girls in all their diversity can enjoy the right to health – during, and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite progress in gender equality, health equity and women’s health in the 25 years since the Beijing conference, global statistics continue to tell a disturbing story. Read more




WHO publishes new fact sheet on endometriosis


Endometriosis affects roughly 1 in 10 women and girls of reproductive age globally, associated with debilitating pain and a wide range of possible symptoms including infertility. The WHO fact sheet is an important step towards effective policies and interventions to address this chronic disease. Read more




Increasing understanding of the impact of COVID-19 for pregnant women and their babies


Pregnant women with COVID-19 are less likely than non-pregnant women with COVID-19 to have symptoms, but more likely to need intensive care if severely ill – according to the latest update of a unique living systematic review. Read more




To provide survivor-centered care, health workers in Pakistan learn to ask about gender-based violence with empathy


Early in her career, Dr Rukhsana Bashir, a clinician in Pakistan, was used to seeing women in her clinic with symptoms of pain, headaches, insomnia and depression. She would listen and treat each symptom, but the underlying causes went unnoticed. Read more




From paper to digital pathway: WHO launches first ‘SMART Guidelines’


WHO has launched its first SMART Guideline, a landmark effort to accelerate the availability and impact of WHO health and data recommendations within digital systems at the country level, starting with antenatal care. Read more




In Somalia, health workers, girls and women are experts in preventing female genital mutilation


Hamda Cali, an activist, nurse and midwife in Somaliland, Somalia, often thinks of her sister and cousins when she trains health workers to stop female genital mutilation (FGM) in their communities. Read more









Journal Articles


WHO has an open-access policy for publishing in journals. Articles are available in full text. 



Unmasking power as foundational to research on sexual and reproductive health and rights
BMJ Global Health 2021;6:e005482

‘We always find things to learn from.’ Lessons from the implementation of the global maternal sepsis study on research capacity: a qualitative study
BMC Health Serv Res 21, 208 (2021). doi:10.1186/s12913-021-06195-9 

Systemic hormonal contraception initiation after abortion: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Contraception VOLUME 103, ISSUE 5, P291-304, MAY 01, 2021 

Clinical manifestations, risk factors, and maternal and perinatal outcomes of coronavirus disease 2019 in pregnancy: living systematic review and meta-analysis
BMJ 2020;370:m3320 

Persistence of Ebola virus in semen among Ebola virus disease survivors in Sierra Leone: A cohort study of frequency, duration, and risk factors
PLOS Medicine 18(2): e1003273. doi: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1003273 

Implementing antenatal care recommendations, South Africa
Bulletin of the World Health Organization 2021;99:220-227. 

The role of self-care interventions on men’s health-seeking behaviours to advance their sexual and reproductive health and rights
Health Res Policy Sys 19, 23 (2021). doi: 10.1186/s12961-020-00655-0 

WHO SMART guidelines: optimising country-level use of guideline recommendations in the digital age
The Lancet Digital Health VOLUME 3, ISSUE 4, E213-E216, APRIL 01, 2021 
Integrating human rights into sexual and reproductive health research: moving beyond the rhetoric, what will it take to get us there?
Sexual and Reproductive Health Matters, 29:1, DOI: 10.1080/26410397.2021.1881206 

Global epidemiology of Neisseria gonorrhoeae in infertile populations: systematic review, meta-analysis and metaregression
Sexually Transmitted Infections 2021;97:157-169. Access

Measurement of violence against women and disability: protocol for a scoping review
BMJ Open 2020;10:e040104. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2020-040104 

The state of adolescent menstrual health in low- and middle-income countries and suggestions for future action and research
Reprod Health 18, 31 (2021). doi: 10.1186/s12978-021-01082-2 Access

Sexual behaviour patterns and STI risk: results of a cluster analysis among men who have sex with men in Portugal
BMJ Open 2021;11:e033290. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2019-033290 

A hybrid, effectiveness-implementation research study protocol targeting antenatal care providers to provide female genital mutilation prevention and care services in Guinea, Kenya and Somalia
BMC Health Serv Res 21, 109 (2021). doi.org/10.1186/s12913-021-06097-w 





Technical Publications


Recently published WHO technical documents, available for download.


Violence Against Women Prevalence Estimates, 2018 Access

Violence Against Women Prevalence Estimates, 2018: Executive Summary Access

WHO SMART Antenatal Care Guidelines Access

Training resource package for family planning: Hormonal Intrauterine Device Access
WHO labour care guide and user’s manual Access
All SRH/HRP publications Access










Access translations of departmental publications in the following languages










Events Updates





Worldwide, 7 April 2021


World Health Day 2021


As COVID-19 has highlighted, some people are able to live healthier lives and have better access to health services than others - entirely due to the conditions in which they are born, grow, live, work and age. This is not only unfair: it is preventable. Read more




20 April, 14:00 CET


WHO/IBP Network Implementation Stories Global Launch


This webinar is the first one in a series of webinars that WHO/IBP Network and Knowledge SUCCESS will be hosting in the coming months to highlight winning field-based program implementation stories, and the learnings that the authors have gained through their implementation experiences. Read more









Consultancy: Gender-based violence in emergencies


WHO seeks a qualified individual consultant with expert knowledge of gender-based violence (GBV) response and prevention, as well as demonstrated professional experience in humanitarian response and preparedness, to implement activities to strengthen integration of GBV interventions into the WHO and the interagency health sector response to the humanitarian crisis in Northern Ethiopia. More Info



Join as global stakeholder: joining forces to develop a research agenda on intersections of violence against children and violence against women


The Sexual Violence Research Initiative (SVRI),  UNICEF Innocenti, and HRP are joining efforts to develop a global research agenda to contribute to building knowledge in a more systematic way, ensure that research efforts make the best use of limited resources, and serve to monitor progress over time.  More Info



WHO & UNFPA are calling for implementation stories for the launch of the joint Learning by Sharing Portal on sexual and reproductive health and universal health coverage


The call is open to policy-makers, programme implementers, researchers and civil society organizations to submit a short story or case study to WHO by 20 May 2021 on the processes, practices, and lessons for integrating sexual and reproductive health services and information within health systems and services towards universal access to a comprehensive range of SRH services.  More Info














RHL Online


WHO's Reproductive Health Library.


HRP video library


HRP on YouTube.




Department of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Research
UNDP-UNFPA-UNICEF-WHO-World Bank Special Programme of Research
Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction.




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Nandita Thatte, DrPH

Department of Sexual and Reproductive Health

World Health Organization

Geneva, Switzerland

Email: thatten@...