Developing Countries: Family Planning

International Development written question – answered on 20th March 2014.

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Photo of Bob Blackman Bob Blackman Conservative, Harrow East

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development pursuant to answer to the hon. Member for Foyle of 10 March 2014, Official Report, column 42W, on developing countries: family planning, what empirical bases and methodologies her Department uses in its annual assessment of the extent to which the Government are achieving value for money from its Programme Partnership Arrangement funding to Marie Stopes International and the International Planned Parenthood Federation; how the estimate of 715,929 abortions was arrived at; what meaning is given to unsafe when describing such abortions; and how her Department arrives at an evidence-based understanding of what constitutes an unsafe abortion when no data are collected on the abortions performed by partner organisations.

Photo of Lynne Featherstone Lynne Featherstone The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for International Development

DFID's Value for Money assessments of all its Programme Partnership Arrangements, including Marie Stopes International (MSI) and International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF); involves consideration of how they minimise costs and maximise results. Achieved results are compared to pre-agreed outputs and outcomes, and organisations must demonstrate how costs are kept at a proportionate level.

Estimated numbers of unsafe abortions averted are modelled from collected family planning data entered into the Impact-2 estimator tool, owned by MSI. As with all modelled data the results are approximate. Further information can be found at

DFID uses the World Health Organisation's (WHO) definition of safe and unsafe abortion; DFID's understanding of abortion levels, safe and unsafe, are guided by WHO data. The most recent estimates of global and regional levels of unsafe abortion and related mortality were published by the WHO in 2012.

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