About this study

The current pandemic has led to an unprecedented increase in demand on health systems for care for people with COVID-19 infection. The increased demand compounded by restrictions on movement instituted as part of containment measures have led to disruptions in the provision of essential services, including sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services.

The research will identify the key gaps and barriers to the delivery of SRH services. The data will provide a better understanding of the impact of COVID-19 on contraception, abortion care, treatment and care of sexually transmitted infections (STI) and care and support for women (and others) who experience(d) gender-based violence. Findings will be pooled allowing local and global analysis. Findings will inform recommendations for policy-makers and health managers to develop and strengthen policies and services to be more responsive to community needs during health emergencies. It will provide a set of strategies to assess health facility and system readiness to respond to health emergencies in future.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has funded the study. This UK arm is led by Professor Nigel Sherriff with Dr Alexandra Sawyer in partnership with University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust. Additional arms of the study are being conducted in Italy, China, Burkina Faso, Kenya, Thailand, Ghana, Pakistan, and Brazil.