Experts Call for Quality, Equality and Accountability at Global Consultation on Women’s HealthOctober 5, 2013 | Mexico City, Mexico

An experts’ meeting on women’s health, the third in a series of global thematic conferences organized within the context of ICPD Beyond 2014, focused on the need for equality, quality and accountability in the arena of sexual and reproductive health and rights.

Under the overall theme of Rights, Empowerment and Social Determinants, the Mexico City meeting (September 30- October 2), drew together experts from every region, more than 60 in all. They called for evidence-based actions to advance sexual and reproductive rights, with emphasis on accelerating universal access to integrated sexual and reproductive health services within a human rights framework.

Task Force Members Ishita Chaudhry, Alessandra Nilo and Gita Sen, along with Maria Jose Alcala, Director of the Task Force Secretariat, were actively engaged in the consultation. The report, being drafted by UNFPA, is expected to capture the expert recommendations on a range of sexual and reproductive health and rights issues, many of which also reflect the Task Force’s own policy positions for the ICPD Beyond 2014.

At the meeting, evidence was presented on the state-of-the-art across a range of key issues — including comprehensive sexuality education, contraceptive choice, maternal health, sexually transmitted infections, safe abortion, violence against women and girls and integrated service delivery.

Outcomes of the meeting, which was organized by UNFPA in collaboration with WHO, will inform the 2014 Commission on Population and Development and Secretary-General’s report, along with recommendations from the Bali Youth Forum (2012) and the Human Rights Conference in The Hague (2013). The report of this meeting will also serve as an input to the Post-2015 development discussions.