Former Philippine Health Secretary Janette Loreto Garin

Family planning to curb maternal mortality rate – Sec. Garin

MANILA –– Explaining some benefits of president–elect Rodrigo Duterte’s proposed three-child policy, Philippine Health Secretary Janette Loreto Garin said that proper planning will not only help stem the country’s over–population.

Secretary Garin who authored the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Law when she was still a congresswoman said ‘giving poor women free access to family planning programs and commodities will also address the high maternal mortality rate of our country’.

‘The implementation of sound family planning methods resolves cases of mothers dying because of pregnancy and prevent child birth complications’, Garin added.

During debates on the Reproductive Health Act before Congress, then Representative Garin explained that family planning is not only pro-life and pro-family but also anti-abortion and anti-irresponsible parenthood.

‘Family planning is not in the same context with abortion. Family planning is in the context of responsible parenthood. Fact is, we have thousands of families living below poverty level denied of education and information on family planning services. No less than the World Health Organization (WHO) in its efforts to globally promote family planning recognizes this problem’, Garin said.

Secretary Garin also clarified that comprehensive health care includes measures promoting safe motherhood, care for persons with sexually transmitted infections, infertility treatment, and male involvement in reproductive health.

The United Nations estimates the current population of the Philippines to be over 102 million. The country’s maternal mortality rate has risen to 221 deaths per 100,000 live births.