United Nations agency estimates that nearly half of all pregnancies globally are unintended

Posted 22 April 2022

Date: 22 Apr 2022

Type: FSRH Press Releases and Statements

The UNFPA, the United Nations sexual and reproductive health agency, has released its State of World Population 2022 report, which estimates that 121 million pregnancies are unintended - nearly half of all pregnancies globally. According to UNFPA, it is also estimated that 45% of all abortions globally are unsafe, causing 5 – 13% of all maternal deaths, thereby having a major impact on achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The State of World Population report is UNFPA’s annual flagship publication. The 2022 report, “Seeing the Unseen”, outlines key factors that contribute to unintended pregnancies:

  • Lack of sexual and reproductive health care and information
  • Contraceptive options that don't suit women's bodies or circumstances
  • Harmful norms and stigma surrounding women controlling their own fertility and bodies
  • Sexual violence and reproductive coercion
  • Judgmental attitudes or shaming in health services
  • Poverty and stalled economic development
  • Gender inequality

The report states that all of these factors reflect the pressure societies place on women and girls to become mothers. Click here to download it.