Participants at the London Summit have made new financial commitments amounting to $2625 million to support the provision of family planning services in developing countries
Planning a family continues to be a challenge in developing countries, where some 220 million women and girls have no access to family planning services or contraceptives. This situation leads to 75 million unwanted pregnancies every year, associated with a high risk of death and disability for both mother and child. The London Summit on Family Planning has put this problem squarely on the international agenda and secured new funding pledges for more than $2.6 billion to be spent on family planning services in developing countries.
Organised by the British Department for International Development (DFID) and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the London Summit brought together 150 civil society leaders and representatives of donor groups, international development agencies, the private sector, and the research community to mobilise the financial and political commitment needed to ensure access to contraceptive services, supplies and information "without discrimination or coercion" for 120 million women and girls in the world's poorest countries by 2020.
Access to effective contraception is considered to be one of the most cost-effective investments a country can make in its future. The organisers of the event have said that the additional funding pledged by the international community at the London Summit will prevent the death of around 200,000 women and 3 million babies and will result in 110 million fewer unwanted pregnancies and 50 million fewer abortions by the end of the decade.