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

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

Jun 03, 2020
09:30 - 10:45 AM EST

Center for
Global Development

Around the world, the COVID-19 pandemic threatens access to sexual and reproductive health, including contraceptive services, for women and girls who are disproportionately affected by the crisis in a myriad of ways. Alongside broader health needs, disruptions to sexual and reproductive health services are driven by supply-side challenges, such as supply chain interruptions, stockouts, and health worker shortages, as well as demand-side obstacles, including travel restrictions, fear of visiting health facilities, and reduced income to cover out-of-pocket costs. We know from previous crises that reduced access to sexual and reproductive health results in increased rates of unintended pregnancies, unsafe abortions, and maternal and infant mortality—alongside other long-lasting effects for women, girls, and their communities. Available projections suggest the impacts for women and girls unable to access modern contraceptives and other services could be staggering.

Join the Center for Global Development for an online discussion on the anticipated adverse impacts of COVID-19 on access to contraceptives and sexual and reproductive health more broadly—and possible mitigation strategies to protect hard-won gains for women and girls. Panelists will examine existing structural and systemic barriers to service provision and access that may be amplified by COVID-19, particularly for vulnerable and marginalized groups. The panel will also address how low- and middle-income country policymakers, with the support of donors, the private sector, and other development partners, can reinforce the centrality of sexual and reproductive health as an essential healthcare service through the pandemic and beyond.

If you have questions for our panelists, please submit them to, tweet @CGDev #CGDTalks, or submit your comments via YouTube.


Salma Anas-Kolo


Department of Family Health, Federal Ministry of Health, Nigeria

Mary-Ann Etiebet

Executive Director

MSD for Mothers

Amanda Glassman

Chief Operating Officer & Senior Fellow

Center for Global Development

Monique Vledder

Practice Manager

Global Financing Facility Secretariat


Dr. Monique Vledder is passionate about innovations and smarter investments to improve women's, children’s and adolescents’ health. She led the process to develop the GFF Business Plan and has served as the Program Manager for the GFF Secretariat since the establishment of the GFF in September 2014. Previously, Dr. Vledder managed the Health Results Innovation Trust Fund, which to date has committed $436 million in grants, linked to $2.4 billion in financing from IDA, the World Bank’s fund for the poorest, for 36 results-focused programs in 30 countries. Dr. Vledder’s expertise in maternal and child health, health financing and health systems strengthening was built over twenty years of in country experience with a focus on southern Africa, East Asia and Latin America for the World Bank, the United Kingdom Department for International Development and World Vision International. She holds an MD from the University of Amsterdam, a MPH in International Health from Harvard University and a diploma in health economics from the University of York. Dr. Vledder is a proud mother of two.

Prashant Yadav

Senior Fellow

Center for Global Development

Janeen Madan Keller


Assistant Director of Global Health and Senior Policy Analyst, Center for Global Development


GFF Response to COVID-19