Sexual and reproductive health – still a major challenge in the 21st Century. World Health Summit 2010

A partner symposium organized by the Federal Centre for Health Education (BzGA) and the WHO Regional Office for Europe took place on the Forum Day of the World Health Summit 2010 in Berlin and raised a lot of interest and lively discussion.

While Dr G. Lazdane, Regional Adviser, Sexual and Reproductive Health, took stock of the current state of sexual and reproductive health (SRH) in Europe and particularly existing challenges and barriers, J. Schmitt, representing the Federal Ministry of Economic cooperation and development, highlighted challenges encountered worldwide in the context of development cooperation. Both of the speakers referred to the Millennium Development Goals and coordination with activities going on in accelerating progress to reach the targets set.

Dr E. Pott, BZgA, WHO Collaborating Center in Cologne, Germany, presented an example of the role of a governmental organization in sexual health promotion. The Federal Centre for Health Education has the legal mandate to lay the foundation for a comprehensive good quality of sexuality education in Germany. 
Dr E. Ketting, Radboud University Nijmegen, the Netherlands, explored the role of sexuality education in fostering and improving SRH of young people. He elaborated on the characteristics of an effective approach that makes a difference and on the limitations of sexuality education if access to services is not made possible at the same time.

V.  Claeys, Regional Director of the IPPF European Network, chaired the symposium and emphasized the role of non-governmental organization in the field of SRH from an international perspective.

This was a good example of partnership at governmental and international level and of public health and civil society to move forward in achieving universal access to reproductive health.