Stock Advisory - Ebola response


Please Note: The UNFPA Procurement Services Branch, Emergency team has a large quantity of Male latex condoms in stock, and available for shipment with no production time.
The condoms could provide much needed protection for survivors of Ebola as the virus can still be transmitted up to 7 weeks after recovery from the illness, according to WHO. Read more.

For more information about availability of stock, please contact the UNFPA PSB Emergency team at

For more information about the UNFPA response to the Ebola crisis, click here.


For the latest from AccessRH, check out our October 2014 newsletter.

Ebola Wiping Out Gains in Safe Motherhood

More than 800,000 pregnant women face much greater risk in Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone


UNITED NATIONS, New York, 16 October 2014 — As the world intensifies its response to the Ebola crisis in West Africa, the needs of pregnant women must be addressed urgently to save the lives of mothers and infants, warns UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund.


"The reality is that pregnant women are facing a double threat – dying from Ebola and from pregnancy or childbirth, due to the devastating impact of Ebola on health workers and health systems,” said UNFPA Executive Director, Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin. “Ebola is not only killing those infected, but also those affected.  Pregnant women and girls are at greater risk."

UNFPA estimates that more than 800,000 women in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone would give birth in the next 12 months. All will require antenatal, delivery and postnatal care and related emergency obstetric support. But many pregnant women are afraid to visit, or are turned away from, overstretched health facilities, which puts them and their babies’ lives at risk.


Of these women, more than 120,000 could die of complications of pregnancy and childbirth, if the required life-saving emergency obstetric care is not urgently provided.  


“The situation for pregnant women in Ebola crisis countries is devastating. Gains in maternal health and family planning are being wiped out and women are desperate for information and services to protect their health and that of their babies,” added Dr. Osotimehin. “Today, I call for urgent funding to meet the reproductive health needs of women and mothers in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.”


Furthermore, it has been estimated that 1.2 million women of childbearing age may lack access to the family planning services they require. This will increase the number of unexpected pregnancies in these countries.


UNFPA estimates that $64.5 million is needed to provide reproductive and maternal health services in the next three months in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

Before Ebola struck, the health systems in these countries were steadily improving and significant gains had been made in terms of increased access to maternal health and family planning services. However, most of these gains have been wiped out due to a breakdown in many aspects of the public health system. 


To expand access to reproductive health information and services, UNFPA is using innovative approaches, such as tent-based outreach and mobile clinics.  It is also recruiting several hundred midwives to support maternal health and family planning services. In addition, the Fund is tackling fears and misinformation and promoting health-seeking behaviour.


UNFPA is also providing emergency safe delivery kits, personal protective equipment and infection prevention supplies, such as Chlorine bleach, gloves and masks. The Fund is expanding contact tracing nationwide in the three countries so that those who have come into contact with infected persons are monitored, and isolated and treated as necessary.


UNFPA’s response is integrated into the newly formed United Nations Mission for Emergency Ebola Response (UNMEER). The Fund is also a member of the Global Ebola Response Coalition.




For more information, please contact:


Omar Gharzeddine: Tel. +1 212 297

Celine Adotevi: Tel. +1 212 297 5077;

Happy International Day of the Girl Child

Today is the International Day of the Girl Child!
UNFPA and AccessRH are taking action to protect the health and rights of adolescent girls, and we will not stop until the world upholds the inherent rights of every girl child. We believe that if you change her life, you can change the world. 

AccessRH celebrates World Contraception Day

In celebration of World Contraception Day, the Population Council published an article written by Dr. Campbell Bright of UNFPA (PSB).

The article, entiled A Balanced Response to Basic Human Rights Needs in Crisis Settings, explores the need for reproductive health in crisis settings as a basic human right.

Excerpt below:

The screams emanating from the delivery room did not beckon me to enter, but such was my introduction to reproductive health in refugee settings. Like 51 million people around the world, the Palestinian woman in labor was forcibly displaced.


To read the entire article, please visit the Population Council site here.

AccessRH supports the International AIDS Conference 2014

The International AIDS Conference is the premier gathering for those working in the field of HIV, as well as policy makers, persons living with HIV and other individuals committed to ending the pandemic.

The AIDS 2014 programme will present new scientific knowledge and offer many opportunities for structured dialogue on the major issues facing the global response to HIV. The conference give us a chance to assess where we are, evaluate recent scientific developments and lessons learnt, and collectively chart a course forward. 

On this 20th International AIDS Conference, UNFPA’s AccessRH supports this year’s efforts in Stepping up the Pace. By improving access to life saving commodities, AccessRH helps to support numerous stakeholder’s efforts to Step up the Pace.

Key Figures

  • UNFPA’s AccessRH procurement service procured over 260 million condoms to South Africa in 2013 alone.

AccessRH Celebrates World Population Day

On this World Population Day, UNFPA is fully committed to supporting all efforts to promote young people’s aspirations and to place young people at the very heart of national and global development efforts.

Today’s 1.8 billion young people are a powerful force, individually and collectively. They are shaping social and economic realities, challenging norms and values and building the foundation of the world’s future. 

Governments and the international community are increasingly conscious of the importance of providing resources and opportunities for all young people to reach their full potential as individuals and citizens.  They recognize that investing in young people and enabling them to exercise their human rights not only benefits young people themselves, but can also help their countries reap a demographic dividend. 


UNFPA and World Bank Group simplify procurement of reproductive health supplies

UNFPA recently reached a new agreement with the World Bank Group (WBG) that will make it easier for WBG borrowers to procure reproductive health supplies through UNFPA’s AccessRH service. The agreement comes as part of a coordinated effort to step up support to developing countries to improve women’s health in the countdown to reach the Millennium Development Goals by the end of 2015. 

The new agreement is a result of an ongoing partnership between the World Bank Group and UNFPA to advance women’s health. It has dramatically simplified the procurement process that countries have to undertake under World Bank Group-financed projects, as well as streamlined invoicing, billing, and financial reporting.

"The beauty of this new agreement is that it is no longer using World Bank-specific ordering, invoicing and payment systems. The countries can now review specifications and select reproductive health supplies from UNFPA’s online Catalog to place their orders. The process is the same irrespective of whether the funding comes from the World Bank or public budget," said Christopher Browne, Chief Procurement Officer of the World Bank Group. “This is an important step in facilitating achievement of health and development outcomes and working toward seamless partnerships that ultimately benefit our clients and people who use these health supplies.”

Under the new agreement, the countries can place individual orders using UNFPA’s online procurement portal,, in accordance with the time schedule set in the project's procurement plan. UNFPA reviews and quotes a fixed price for the ordered items. The exact amount is then transferred from the project account within 30 days for UNFPA to commence procurement.

"This arrangement can benefit a broad range of countries," said Eric Dupont, UNFPA Chief of Procurement. "Smaller countries that cannot access quality assured or competitively priced goods; governments that don't have enough staff to conduct timely procurement; and countries that need to fill supply gaps while they are conducting a local bidding process -- all can benefit. What we hear most is that AccessRH saves time and money, and, most importantly, ensures the safety and efficacy of much-needed reproductive health supplies."

The simplified and automated ordering system will help countries with timely re-stocking of reproductive health supplies.

Over 100 organisations have partnered with AccessRH to provide life-saving supplies

Since the beginning of 2011, more than 100 non-profit organisations from over 70 countries around the world have partnered with AccessRH to provide life-saving reproductive health related supplies.

The majority of AccessRH clients are Ministries of Health and other governmental institutions from low and middle income countries, but local and international NGOs account for a increasing proportion.

To date, AccessRH has enabled the delivery of approximately 57 million USD worth of reproductive health supplies. Through our collaboration, we are helping make critical RH supplies more accessible around the world.

The map below illustrates the more than 70 countries where AccessRH clients are located. 

AccessRH clients are located in more than 70 countries around the world

Delivering products faster to those in need - Fistula repair kits available from stock

Contents of the fistula repair kit 1

Long delivery times are one of the key challenges that organisations face when providing reproductive health supplies. This is partly because production and packaging of large amounts of items can often take several months, often combined with lengthy transportation times. 

The AccessRH approach to this challenge is working together with manufacturers who, on UNFPA’s behalf, keep certain key contraceptives in stock and ready for shipment. 

This inventory approach has been applied to standard 53 mm male condoms for many years. The lead time for these condoms has been approximately three months shorter compared to situations where condom production was started at the time of the order placement. 

Since 2012, UNFPA has broadened the variety of contraceptive methods in stock. In addition to standard male condoms, these items currently include female condoms, oral contraceptives, IUDs, emergency reproductive health kits, and starting from November 2013, two different types of fistula repair kits.

Kits provide equipment for safe fistula repair

Two complementary fistula repair kits were developed last year in collaboration with expert fistula surgeons around the world. The kits, which each include dozens of different items, are designed to provide the necessary materials for performing surgical repairs of fistula. The components of both kits can also be ordered separately.

  • Kit 1 includes all necessary medical instruments to do one fistula repair. The equipment can be sterilized and reused.
  • Kit 2 is comprised of supplementary medical supplies to provide 20 fistula repairs and post-operative care. It includes materials that a fistula surgeon needs, yet which may not be readily available in all contexts.

Contents of fistula repair kit 2

If your organisation is in need of fistula repair kits, the first step is to see the detailed descriptions of the kit contents in the AccessRH Product Catalog, under the heading Medical kits. The how to order page provides further instructions on the order process.

UNFPA estimates that ordering these pre-packed and pre-inspected fistula repair kits from stock may save approximately 10-12 weeks of lead time. Depending on the method of transportation used to transport the goods from the manufacturer, it will take 2 to 4 weeks for fistula kits to be ready for delivery at the manufacturer’s premises (2-3 weeks if delivered by air and to 3-4 weeks if shipped by sea).

Under normal circumstances compiling the kits takes approximately 14 weeks, with an additional week required for sampling and inspection. The kits held in stock have already been through the sampling and inspection process to ensure high quality.

The lead time calculator will provide you with a country-specific estimated lead time. 

Find out more about obstetric fistula.

Procurement eLearning module available for governments and NGOs

UNFPA’s Global Programme has published an online learning module about procurement. This introductory training is free of charge and available to governments and other external partners working with UNFPA, such as NGOs. 

The Introduction to Procurement eLearning module is currently available in English, French, Russian, Portuguese and Spanish. After successfully completing the course, the site will generate a certificate for the user.

The Learning Zone requires registration, so to gain access, please contact your local UNFPA country office and provide the following information: your full name, organization (no acronyms), division if applicable, and e-mail address. If your country is not part of the Programme, contact us at

UNFPA's Global Programme to enhance Reproductive Health Commodity Security (GPRHCS) delivers assistance, including capacity building, related to reproductive health systems and supplies.

This eLearning course is part of the Programme’s capacity building initiatives. A course about ethics in procurement will be launched in the near future.

If you want to know more about capacity building in procurement or supply chain management, please write to

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