According to the Commission on Population and Development (POPCOM), they have estimated nearly two million women in the country, aged 15-49 years old, are expected to get pregnant this year.
These numbers were based from the studies of University of the Philippines Population Institute (UPPI) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) that attributed the spike to the impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) on family planning efforts among Filipino households.
If this pushes through, it will record the highest number of births in the country by next year since 2000.
POPCOM executive director and Undersecretary Juan Antonio Perez III reported that one out of three women with unmet needs for family planning will get pregnant. This is because of the restriction of movement and the lack of guidance in planning while under quarantine.
Their data discovered that there are 3,099,000 women between 15 to 49 years old who have unmet needs for family planning, and a total of 590,000 or a 19 percent will be added to this number due to the lockdowns.
They also recorded a decline in percentage of women who use any method of modern contraceptive by 2.2 percent, meaning over 400,000 women will drop out of the country’s family planning program.
Meanwhile, POPCOM will maintain an active helpline that can be accessed anytime by anyone on the Usap Tayo sa Family Planning Facebook page (@UsapTayoSaFP).
They also are offering home delivery of three months’ worth of supplies such as pills and condoms for those enlisted to the family planning program as well as the reopening of health centers that can accommodate women who wish to avail birth control services.