Re: Family Planning Summit
Austin, you cite Harvard Professor Lant Pritchett’s contention that there is no great “unmet need” need for contraception. In all fairness, it might be worth noting this passage from the key paper (“Desired Fertility and the Impact of Population Policies,” 1994) in which he set out that thesis :
Even if contraceptive access has a small effect on fertility, this is certainly no reason for governments to limit the availability of contraception, and there may be valid reasons for subsidy. Just because family planning is of marginal relevance for population change does not mean it does not have other beneficial impacts. Moreover, a reduction in the focus of family planning programs on population growth will allow greater attentiveness in the design of contraceptive supply to other considerations, such as child and maternal health, the timing of first births, and the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases. Undoubtedly, the expanded availability of modern contraception has greatly improved human welfare.