Duterte Oks heightened implementation of family planning
President Rodrigo Duterte has approved the intensified implementation of the family planning program, which is expected to reduce poverty in the country.
Duterte gave his nod on the "full and intensified implementation" Plan for the National Program on Family Planning during the 35th Cabinet meeting Monday, said Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo in a statement.
Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia and Executive Director of the Commission on Population and Development Juan Antonio Perez III presented the plan during the Cabinet meeting.
"The approval of the aforesaid plan is expected to reduce poverty incidence in the country, which currently has the highest fertility rate and fastest growing population in the ASEAN region, from the current 20% to 14% in 2022, the year PRRD (Duterte) steps down into office. Aside from poverty reduction, the plan equally aims to promote better health and socioeconomic development among Filipinos," he said.
With the heightened enforcement of family planning, the government will use effective modern contraceptives where 11.3 million women would be given access to over the next four years.
"The aim is to increase the usage thereof from 40% to 65%. This is seen to prevent 4 million unintended pregnancies and 2 million cases of abortion over the said period," Panelo said.
While the government acknowledged that great majority of Filipinos favor family planning, not all of them have access to contraceptives "due to various reasons."
But with the approval of the plan, he said the government would be ready to assist those who wish to undergo family planning.
The Philippines is a predominantly a Catholic nation. The Catholic church has been opposing the artificial mode of family planning. Celerina Monte/DMS