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- Approximately 287,000 women die every year from problems caused by childbirth. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation estimates that approximately 1 in 4 women could be saved if they had global access to contraception. About 3.2 million infants die every year from preventative illnesses. If proper family planning measures are used The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation estimates that 1 in 5 infants could be saved.
Family planning remains out of reach for many couples in low-income settings—more than 200 million couples in the developing world are unable to control the number and spacing of their births. In some African countries, the level of unmet need for family planning exceeds the level of contraceptive use. Among the many technologies available to improve the human condition, family planning is one of the most cost-effective interventions with enduring health and welfare benefits for women, families, nations and the entire world. The coming decades will see a record number of young people entering prime reproductive ages, requiring the means to prevent unplanned pregnancy and achieve healthy timing and spacing of pregnancies. Reaching Millennium Development Goal 5b, universal access to reproductive health, requires comprehensive resource planning, which in turn requires a continually refreshed base of strong evidence, best practices and a wide range of contraceptive commodities.