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The interim recommendations are based on the ongoing available information about the conditions associated with COVID-19 caused by the SARS CoV 2 virus and they refer to the healthcare professionals who come into contact with this category of patients, such as: family gynecologists, gynecologists responsible for maternity care, pediatricians, midwives and nursing care during the antenatal and peripartum period, as well as all the other health personnel involved in the monitoring and treatment of pregnant women.

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This technical brief was developed by the UNFPA Global Ageing Network to complement the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs' (UN DESA) Issue Brief: Older Persons and COVID-19, which emphasized the humanitarian imperative of addressing older persons' specific needs within preparedness and response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

UNFPA focuses on human rights, health and protection of older persons in light of COVID-19, and this document highlights relevant initiatives underway in offices worldwide. Responding to the rights and needs of older persons is fully in line with one of the accelerators of the UNFPA COVID-19 Global Response Plan, i.e. to leave no one behind.

The document underscores UNFPA’s role in supporting the UN COVID-19 response at the country level, under the leadership of the United Nations Resident Coordinator system and the World Health Organization (WHO). UNFPA also supports civil society to advocate for older persons’ participation in the policy arena, and for their voices to be heard in preparedness and response to a crisis in which they are the most affected.

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The COVID-19 pandemic constitutes the largest global public health crisis in a century, with daunting health and socioeconomic challenges. As the UN Secretary-General ' noted, this “is the greatest test that we have faced since the formation of the United Nations”. Governments are taking unprecedented measures to limit the spread of the virus, ramping up health systems and restricting the movement of millions. The pandemic has already severely disrupted access to life-saving sexual and reproductive health services. It is worsening existing inequalities for women and girls, and deepening discrimination against other marginalized groups. Sexual and reproductive health and rights is a significant public health issue that demands urgent and sustained attention and investment.

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As the world grapples with the spread of COVID-19, UNFPA must ad- dress the implications of the outbreak on preparations and implementa- tion of the 2020 census round. With 150 countries (including 85 UNFPA programme countries) scheduled to conduct census enumeration in 2020 and 2021, the potential disruption of the 2020 census round could be significant.

The COVID-19 pandemic will threaten the successful conduct of censuses in many countries through delays, interruptions that compro- mise quality, or complete cancellation of census projects. Domestic and donor financing for census may be diverted to address COVID-19 leaving census without crucial funds. Several countries have already taken deci- sions to postpone the census, with many others yet to announce the way forward

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Disease outbreaks affect women and men differently, and pandemics make existing inequalities for women and girls and discrimination of other marginalized groups such as persons with disabilities and those in extreme poverty, worse. This needs to be considered, given the different impacts surrounding detection and access to treatment for women and men.

Women represent 70 percent of the health and social sector workforce globally and special attention should be given to how their work environment may expose them to discrimination, as well as thinking about their sexual and reproductive health and psychosocial needs as frontline health workers.

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My Body, My Life, My World! is UNFPA's new Global Strategy for Adolescents and Youth

It puts young people—their talents, hopes, perspectives and unique needs—at the very centre of sustainable development. In doing so, it backs achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, and aligns with the new United Nations Strategy on Youth as well as the UNFPA Strategic Plan 2018-2021. Everything UNFPA does rests on the commitments to sexual and reproductive health and rights for all embodied in the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development and its Programme of Action. These commitments are crucial for adolescents and youth.
Young people realizing their rights to make informed choices about their own bodies, their own lives and the world they live in is a matter of justice and a driver of a lifetime of returns.

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The year 2019 marks two important milestones in the field of reproductive health:

50 years since UNFPA began operations, and 25 years since the landmark International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) in Cairo.

These two events - the launch of the first United Nations agency dedicated to addressing population growth and the reproductive health needs of the world’s people, and the declaration of a global commitment to sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights - have fundamentally shaped the lives of women and families, and the societies in which they live, in ways measurable and immeasurable, profound and trivial, permanent and fleeting.

Activists, advocates, public health specialists and many others have pushed relentlessly for the transformations we see around us today, but much remains to be done.

What the future holds in terms of changes in population growth, contraceptive use and sexual and reproductive health and rights will both determine and be determined by the ability of women and girls to achieve their full potential as members of their societies. And this will be determined, in no small part, by how the world takes forward the achievements and addresses the shortfalls of the ICPD to date.

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Not so long ago, most people had large families: five children, on average. Where once there was one global fertility rate, today there are many, with differences wider than at any point in human history.

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In several countries in Eastern Europe, populations are shrinking. The world’s ten fastest shrinking populations are all in Central and Eastern Europe. Governments are concerned about the negative impact of population decline – and population ageing – on the economy, social systems, infrastructure, and even national security

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Five years after the regional ICPD Beyond 2014 review process and the adoption of the 2013 Chair’s summary, UNECE and UNFPA have collaborated to report on the achievements and challenges faced by member States in the implementation of the recommendations contained in that outcome document. This report highlights key population and development trends affecting the UNECE region since the adoption of the 2013 Chair’s summary, outlines replicable solutions to common issues, and puts forward action‐oriented recommendations to further advance the implementation of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) Programme of Action in the region.

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