Kathmandu, June 23
The number of people using contraceptives has dropped nationwide since the coronavirus pandemic began in the country in January.
With repeated extensions of the lockdown, the rate of contraceptive use has been falling.
Modern methods of family planning include male and female sterilisation, injectables, intrauterine devices, contraceptive pills, implants, male condoms, lactational amenorrhoea and emergency contraception.
According to data provided by Family Welfare Division, under the Department of Health Services, there has been a drastic decline in the use of contraceptives.
As the use of contraceptives has declined in the country there are high chances of unplanned pregnancies.
There will be a rise in unsafe abortions and maternal deaths, health experts warn.
“Many are hesitant to attend a clinic or a health facility due to fears of COVID-19 . Also the supply chain of contraceptives has not been maintained. This is why there has been a decline in the use of contraceptives,” said Naresh Pratap KC, former director at Family Welfare Division.
Many clinics, general practices and health facilities have also been closed because of the lockdown.
“There is a chain reaction of unmet needs, unintended pregnancies, unsafe abortions and hundreds of maternal and newborn deaths when family planning services are halted,” said Kabita Aryal, chief of Family Planning and Reproductive Health unit at
Family Welfare Division, under the Department of Health Services.
A version of this article appears in e-paper on June 24, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.