The state of contraception in Europe remains very uneven, according to figures released just a week before Valentine’s Day, which celebrates romantic love. And according to the authors of the so-called Atlas of Contraception, much remains to be done to help women and pregnant people to have children in a planned way.
In the 46 countries of Europe, only 57% of women use modern contraceptive methods. Furthermore, a third of pregnancies are unwanted. In the 27 EU countries access to contraceptives, advice and information online differs greatly. The highest figures are in France and Belgium; the lowest, in Poland and Hungary.
Experts recommend that governments ensure that national health systems cover contraception and have specific programs for young people. “Many young people may have family plans, but for a couple of years from now. For this reason, certain types of long-acting and reversible contraceptives may be more suitable for them than others that require daily reminders, such as the birth control pill,” said Neil. Datta, Executive Director of EPF.
Only 43% of countries include in their national health systems the possibility of covering the total or partial cost of contraceptives, including the most expensive ones such as injections, intrauterine devices and implants.
The group “MEPs for Sexual and Reproductive Rights” defends a greater proactivity on the part of the EU institutions. “The problem is that the European Commission has always been extremely timid and reluctant, it doesn’t dare because it thinks it’s too political. There are (European) campaigns on cancer, obesity, Alzheimer’s…(so) why not about contraceptives and family planning? Because that’s part of public health policies,” said Sophie In ‘t Veld MEP from Renew Europe.
The Contraceptive Policy Atlas has already contributed to legislative changes in seven Member States: Belgium, France, Finland, Italy, Ireland, Lithuania and Luxembourg.
Source: Euronews Español