News Archives

No Covid-19 Vaccine Affects Fertility, Clarifies Health Ministry

Hindustan Times - New Delhi, India, 6/30/2021

The Union Health Ministry on July 30, 2021 announced that none of the available vaccines against COVID-19 affects fertility and reassured that all vaccines were authorised for use after being tested for safety and efficacy. The clarification by the ministry came in response to media reports that expressed concerns regarding infertility due to COVID-19 vaccination amongst the population of reproductive age. Dr NK Arora, chairperson of Covid-19 Working Group of National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (NTAGI) recalled similar claims made in the past about the Polio vaccines in India and abroad that were proven to be false. He assured that all vaccines go through intense scientific research and none of them negatively impact fertility

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Coronavirus | Guidelines Issued for Administering COVID-19 Vaccine to Pregnant Women

The Hindu, India, 6/29/2021

The Union Health Ministry has prepared a fact sheet to guide frontline workers and vaccinators on counselling pregnant women about the value and precautions of the COVID-19 vaccine so that they can make an informed decision. According to the fact sheet, more than 90% of infected pregnant women recover without any need for hospitalisation. However, rapid deterioration may occur in a few and therefore, the document advised pregnant women to take the vaccine. The document, structured in the form of questions-answers to make it more accessible for frontline workers, also stated that pregnant women with underlying medical conditions were at a higher risk of severe illness due to COVID-19. The document stressed that pregnancy did not increase the risk of COVID-19 infection.

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USAID-FOGSI Release Guidelines for Sexual and Reproductive Awareness Among Youth

Mint, India, 6/28/2021

The Federation of Gynaecological Societies of India (FOGSI) in partnership with the US Agency for International Development (USAID) on June 28, 2021 released guidelines for adolescent and youth friendly health services (AYFHS) aimed at creating greater awareness on reproductive and sexual health issues for youth. The guidelines will be used by providers as a reference document for provision of high quality, confidential and non-judgemental services to young people. “This is an important proactive step, which can be easily adopted by the current health delivery system,” Dr. Alpesh Gandhi, Immediate Past President, FOGSI, said. The COVID-19 pandemic has put a spotlight on reproductive health, with the lack of access to contraceptive options during the lockdowns estimated to having caused 2.7 million unwanted pregnancies.

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Amid Cases of Rising Domestic Abuse, Kerala to Revise Textbooks to Promote Gender Equality

The New Indian Express - Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, 6/27/2021

In the wake of numerous cases of domestic violence coming to the fore, Kerala’s government has decided to revise school textbooks, as a way to inculcate gender equality among children. School textbooks will be screened for words and phrases disparaging women. General Education Minister V Sivankuty said that efforts will also be made to inculcate constitutional values and develop civic consciousness among school students. Addressing a news conference on June 22, 2021, Kerala’s chief minister had underscored the government’s strident stance against gender discrimination, adding that the government would intervene in promoting gender equality in public spaces and the workplace.

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Argentine Senate Passes Trans Workers Quota Bill

Merco Press, Argentina, 6/26/2021

Argentina’s Senate has passed a bill mandating that a quota of transgender workers be hired by all government agencies. The bill was endorsed by 55 senators, while only 1 senator voted against it. In Argentina, seven provinces already have a transgender labour quota as do several municipalities. The bill establishes a quota of 1% for national State agencies of all sorts as well as incentives for the hiring of trans people in the private sector. The Executive Branch is yet to pass the bill into law. Minister of Women, Gender, and Diversity, Elisabeth Gómez Alcorta highlighted that this achievement was the end of a road started by Presidential Decree 721/2020, which established the transgender labour quota in the public sector.

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