Why PPFP + Why Now

postpartumfamilyplanningUnmet need for family planning is extremely high among women in the postpartum period. More than 90% of postpartum women in developing countries desire to space or limit a subsequent pregnancy, yet 61% are not using a family planning method. This means that we’re not getting postpartum women the family planning options they want. Only a minority of these women use a family planning (FP) method, and many do not use an FP method consistently or for the recommended 24 months between a birth and next pregnancy. Increasing the uptake of postpartum family planning (PPFP) has the potential to protect and empower postpartum women and make a large contribution towards the goal of Family Planning 2020 (FP2020), a critical milestone to ensuring universal access to sexual and reproductive health and rights by 2030, as laid out in Sustainable Development Goals 3 and 5, and is key to unlocking all development priorities.


Why postpartum family planning (PPFP) and why now? 

Though most women want to delay their pregnancy for at least two years after giving birth, PPFP use is low. Uptake of PPFP has the potential to make a large contribution toward the global goals, yet it remains unavailable to millions of women and girls in the developing world. PPFP is a service delivery strategy that expands access to FP through integration within the existing continuum of maternal, newborn and child health services. Well-implemented, national PPFP programs that deliver family planning services to postpartum women in the first two years after birth using these integrated channels are an essential platform for reaching global FP goals and saving lives of women and children at the same time. Now is a better time than ever to increase access to this life-saving intervention. With updated guidance from the World Health Organization, more postpartum contraceptive options are available than ever before. More women across the globe want to plan their families. More countries are including PPFP in their health strategies. Recognizing this opportune time, global health leaders have galvanized a worldwide movement around greater access to PPFP.

What’s the PPFP movement about?

The Postpartum Family Planning Movement is an international effort to advance access to postpartum family planning (PPFP), or family planning within one year of giving birth. The PPFP Movement aims to catalyze change at the global, regional, and national level to support PPFP as a life-saving intervention for women and their babies and a key strategy to achieving international family planning goals.  

Convened in 2015 by Family Planning 2020 (FP2020) in technical partnership with Jhpiego and in coordination with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), USAID’s Maternal and Child Survival Program, the United Nations Population Fund and the World Health Organization (WHO), the movement aims to fast-track country progress toward FP2020’s goal of reaching an additional 120 million women and girls access with lifesaving contraceptive information, services and supplies by 2020 by focusing on postpartum women, whose family planning needs are frequently overlooked. Since launch, the United Kingdom's Department for International Development (DFID), Track20, and Advance Family Planning (AFP) have also joined the partnership.  

When did it all get started?

The PPFP movement began in June 2015 in Chiang Mai, Thailand, where a global, action-oriented meeting, titled “Accelerating Access to Postpartum Family Planning in Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia” (the “PPFP Global Meeting”), was held with family planning, maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH)representatives from select countries and key international stakeholders to accelerate access to postpartum family planning (PPFP). The PPFP Global Meeting catalyzed learning into action as countries developed specific action plans and built consensus with local partners and policymakers towards their implementation.

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Country Spotlights

Burkina Faso Strengthens Commitment to Scaling Up PPFP Services

Dec. 16, 2016--Since the PPFP Global Meeting in Chiang Mai, Thailand in June 2015, Burkina Faso has made significant progress in ensuring that facilities and health providers are prepared to offer safe and effective family planning methods after birth. After significant advocacy efforts, several key partners have strengthened their commitment to support the Ministry of Health for scaling up PPFP services. Since February 2016, Burkina Faso has:

  • Ensured all future health workers are able to provide postpartum family planning by including it in their teaching curriculum for nursing and midwifery students, as well as physicians specializing in Obstetrics and Gynecology.
  • Provided skills building courses for 54 faculty, instructors and preceptors through clinical updates, courses on effective teaching skills, simulation skills and coaching skills.
  • Equipped over 100 facilities so that new midwifery graduates with PPFP skills can provide PPFPservices
  • Developed a peer coaching system where 250 new PFPP providers will be guided by 50 experienced providers to enhance performance and quality of services in regional networks.
  • Organized post-training follow-up visits of health workers trained on PFPP in all 13 regions of the country to ensure skills and quality services are maintained
  • Distributed data collection tools so health officials can better track PPFP efforts
  • To date, Burkina Faso has more than 160 health facilities offering PFPP services.


Afghanistan Increases Access to Contraceptafg_w_creditives by Expanding Method Mix, Bolstering Training 


Sept. 22, 2016—Since the PPFP Global Meeting in Chiang Mai, Thailand in June 2015, Afghanistan has made significant progress in ensuring women have access to safe and effective family planning methods after birth. After the Chiang Mai meeting, a National Family Planning Meeting was convened where PPFP held a key part of the agenda.

As a result of these national discussions, Afghanistan has:

  • Expanded the options available to women as implants were recently added to the National Essential Medicines list and training packages to include implants as a postpartum method after delivery are being developed;
  • Taken steps to deliver quality counseling on the methods available to postpartum women by training all 92 master trainers for Community Based Health Care Officers and community health workers and updating community health worker counselling and communications materials based on the new World Health Organization 2015 global guidance for PPFP; and
  • Trained 207 health providers including midwives to deliver postpartum IUDs immediately after birth. 

Afghanistan is looking forward to expanding their training to build the capacity of even more health providers in all methods available for postpartum women and exploring where additional integration could take place as part of maternal or child health services so additional women have access to postpartum family planning.

Check back here for updates and progress from other countries.