Various groups are upset with the recent statement of House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte, Jr. that the reproductive health (RH) bill won’t be passed before the State of the Nation Address of President Benigno Aquino this year.
Recent data shows that there are 11 Mothers dying daily from preventable maternal complications; increase of teenage pregnancy by 70% in the last decade; 313 new HIV cases for March 2012 alone and 560,000 unsafe abortion cases annually due to unintended pregnancies.
The Philippine NGO Council on Population, Health and Welfare (PNGOC) believes that delaying the passage of a national policy on RH can worsen the condition of various families especially women and children.
According to Dr. Eden Divinagracia, executive director of PNGOC, “Setting aside a bill that can help family address their RH needs which includes RH information and services is inappropriate and can further deprive them of a good future.”
Dr. Divinagracia is calling on Speaker Belmonte to deliberate immediately the RH bill once session resumes.
PNGOC is a national umbrella network with more than 97 member NGOs believing that NOW is the right time for the passage of a Reproductive Health, Responsible Parenthood, and Population Development policy to recognize the needs of our women, children and families.
For more information, see www.pngoc.org.