Safeguarding Access to Sexual and Reproductive Health during the COVID-19 Pandemic


Governments around the world continue to focus on tackling the COVID-19 outbreak head-on and preventing already-stretched health systems from being even more overwhelmed. But as the pandemic accelerates, governments must also balance COVID-19 responses with wider health needs. Sexual and reproductive health and rights are especially at risk for women and girls, who are disproportionately affected by the crisis in a myriad of ways, including school closures, increased unpaid care duties, and gender-based violence. COVID-19 has presented new challenges for sexual and reproductive healthcare, while also amplifying longstanding barriers. In early June, CGD hosted an online panel to discuss how policymakers, development partners, and the private sector can sustain and expand sexual and reproductive health and rights through the pandemic and beyond. Key takeaways:

  1. Keep sight of COVID-19’s disruptions on sexual and reproductive health gains
  2. Double down on integrating health systems with the innovation ecosystem
  3. Boost local ideas for global impact
  4. Forge a holistic, sector-wide path forward