The Status of Family Planning and Reproductive Health in the Republic of Maldives

Type Working Paper
Title The Status of Family Planning and Reproductive Health in the Republic of Maldives
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2010
This paper presents the status of family planning (FP) in the context of improving access to reproductive
health services in the republic of the Maldives. Methodology adopted while preparing the paper include
extensive desk review as well as interaction with key stakeholders-government, donors/development
partners and NGOs that the author has undertaken during a visit to Male`, the capital city of Maldives.
Available evidence suggests that Maldives has been in the forefront of recognizing the population
problems and policies and programmes were designed to address the issues. During the period from mid-
70s to 2000, Maldives enjoyed a period of relative stability and growth which helped it to prioritize
investment in social development. Health and education facilities were expanded across the country –
including hard-to- reach islands. Rapid expansion of health facilities in the framework of primary health
care and upgrading the facilities by equipping them with needed infrastructure, skilled service providers
and accessories contributed to improve access to health. As a result, Maldives experienced a rapid decline
in fertility and mortality and its life expectancy at birth increased significantly. With a total fertility rate
of 2.5 per woman (Ministry of Health and Family, 2009a), IMR of 11/1000 live births, MMR of 57 per
100000 live births and life expectancy at birth of 73 years in 2008 (Ministry of Health and Family,
2009b), Maldives is well ahead of many of the South Asian countries and has entered the era of
“Demographic Dividend”. Maldives claims to have already achieved the MDG goal of universal primary
education, IMR and MMR and is on track to achieve other MDGs except the goal on environment which
is difficult to attain, given the geographical constraints.

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