Home Others Assess the impact of the expanded Mexico City policy

Assess the impact of the expanded Mexico City policy

The Heilbrunn Department of Population and Family Health (HDPFH) received $ 2 million from the William and Flora Hewlett and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation to access the impact of expanded Mexico City policies on the delivery of reproductive health services to investigate funding and advocacy study.

In January 2017 the President re-introduced Mexico City policy , also known informally as the Global Gag Rule (GGR). Previous versions of this policy prohibited United States family planning funds from being allocated to foreign non-governmental organizations (NGOs) unless they confirmed that they would not practice or actively promote abortion as a family planning method by drawing funds from any source ( including funds). The Mexico City Extended Policy applies to all global health assistance provided by any US department or agency. This means that international public health programs funded separately from family planning, such as HIV / AIDS and infectious diseases, child health, water, sanitation and hygiene, and maternal health, to name a few, are affected.

Mexico City's policy is often mistakenly called the abortion policy. However, the policy is actually a policy to finance development aid that limits the capabilities of organizations any Financing if you wish also accept US global health funding. The policy states that foreign organizations cannot receive U.S. global health assistance if they continue to:

  • Offer abortion as a method of family planning;

  • Providing advice and referrals on abortion as a method of family planning;

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  • Conducting public information campaigns on the availability of abortion; or

  • Advocate the liberalization of abortion laws or advocate for the continued legality of abortion.

Although exempt from the Mexico City Directive themselves, U.S. NGOs that are recipients of U.S. global health aid must ensure that foreign organizations they provide U.S. funds to meet the requirements of the directive. Foreign organizations that receive US foreign aid directly must also comply. Furthermore, this far-reaching policy was at a time of deep cuts in US foreign aid , particularly related to sexual and reproductive health (SRH). These policy changes will have a devastating impact on international family planning programs, as well as the broader field of global health assistance in the United States, by shifting funding from some of the most effective - and sometimes only - providers and service providers that women in underserved communities rely on the whole world.

Given the health implications of the directive, it is vital to track and monitor the impact of this expanded directive on access to contraception and abortion services, as well as related SRH and maternal health outcomes such as HIV and STI testing and treatment, and prenatal care to document. As an institution that combines the implementation of rigorous research with on-site programs and has deep partnerships with academic institutions and community-based organizations and NGOs, HDFPH is well positioned to carry out this work.

The main objective of this research is to answer the question: How do Mexico City policies affect the provision and access to SRH services? To answer this question, we are partnering with Planned Parenthood Global to conduct a rigorous mixed-methods evaluation that documents the impact of reintroduced Mexico City policies in three countries with different cultural and abortion-related legal contexts: Madagascar, Nepal and Kenya.

The results of this in-depth assessment will shed light on the impact of Mexico City policies on multiple areas related to funding, political advocacy, referral networks, and health systems, and will allow public health advocates to provide rich evidence during policy discussions. As part of this project, we will work closely with research and service delivery experts in each country. We will develop and implement the methods based on their input and work to strengthen their ability to conduct similar research in the future.

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Another goal of this research is to examine the global landscape of health financing since the reintroduction of Mexico City politics. Through a series of interviews with bilateral and multilateral agencies, foundations, and civil society organizations, we examine the extent to which Mexico City politics affects organizational policy and funding levels, and the impact these changing donor dynamics have on sexual and reproductive health and advocacy.

Finally HDPFH along with that Center for Health and Gender Equality (CHANGE) , supports a consortium of researchers, representatives of civil society and donors. Monthly meetings, supported by HDPFH, provide researchers with a face-to-face platform to coordinate and collaborate to avoid duplication and share insights into our respective studies. We also support opportunities to connect the research consortium with existing legal, policy, and advocacy working groups on Mexico City politics. It is crucial to encourage the exchange of information between the partners included in these groups in order to determine what evidence needs to be generated in order to maximally support policy, advocacy and the legal challenges of policy.

Each month, HDPFH publishes a summary of the latest media and literature on the Global Gag Rule and related issues in the field of global sexual and reproductive health and rights. This executive summary shows the impact of policies around the world and the major labor organizations that are taking action to mitigate their impact. To receive this monthly update, please fill out the form below.

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For more information about the Mexico City Policy, its terms and exemptions, please visit:

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