You are here

press release

Print Send by mail

11 July 2012


World Population Day 2012:   Universal Access to Reproductive Health Services

Bangkok, today - Countries around the globe will campaign for universal access to reproductive health services to commemorate this year's World Population Day.

The world's population has more than triple since the United Nations was created in 1945, and keeps growing. With more than 7 billion people now inhabiting the planet, "we face ever greater demands on shared resources and significant challenges to the achievement of internationally agreed development goal. Investment in universal access to reproductive health is a crucial investment in healthy societies and a more sustainable future", Mr Ban Ki-Moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations, calls the world's attention for concerted action.

Working for the survival and the well-being of women and girls is a human right imperative. And in order to take advantage of women's full potential in the development of their nations, "they must be able to plan their lives and families," says UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin.

The national investment in good reproductive health is an important ingredient in bringing about the changes. Many people are now healthier and wealthier than they were before. But some are still left out: young people, unmarried people, and migrants, who are still not able to fully exercise their human right to good health. "Even when countries go through very serious demographic changes, as will be the case in Thailand for the next forty years, it's still not about numbers. It's always about people, about individual choices for a better future", Mr Caspar Peek, UNFPA Representative in Thailand, remarks.

Reproductive health problems remain the leading cause of ill health and death for women of childbearing age worldwide. Some 222 million women who would like to avoid or delay pregnancy lack access to effective family planning. Nearly 800 women die every day in the process of giving life. About 1.8 billion young people are entering their reproductive years, often without the knowledge, skills and services they need to protect themselves. Pregnancy and childbirth-related complications are the major cause of death among girls 10 to 19 years old in most developing countries, while the highest rates of sexually transmitted infections are among young people aged 15 to 24.

To raise awareness about sexual and reproductive health, UNFPA Country Office in Thailand and the Department of Health, Ministry of Public Health will co-organise this year's World Population Day in conjunction with the Second National Conference on Reproductive Health, at the Montien River Side Hotel, in Bangkok, on 11-13 July 2012.

For more information, please contact: Dr Taweesap Siraprapasiri, UNFPA Country Office in Thailand, Tel:  02-687 0130; 086 880 0701 E-mail: