Sexual and reproductive health

What's new?

Integrating fertility care and HIV treatment and prevention: how couples affected by HIV can achieve pregnancy safely

8 March 2017– By the end of 2015 there were approximately 36.7 million people living with HIV globally, up to half of whom have HIV-negative partners. HIV-serodiscordant couples – that is, people living with HIV who have HIV-negative partners – who would like to have children, are often inadequately supported by or face significant barriers to accessing existing sexual and reproductive health services. Fertility screening and HIV treatment and prevention – to minimise HIV infection, whilst working towards achieving pregnancy safely – are crucial for all serodiscordant couples, regardless of whether or not they have fertility problems.

Can women who are at high risk of acquiring HIV, safely use hormonal contraception?

Since 1991, there has been mixed evidence as to whether using hormonal contraceptive methods increases a woman’s risk of acquiring HIV. To answer this question the World Health Organization (WHO) has continuously monitored the available evidence. In 2016, WHO commissioned an update of a 2014 systematic review of evidence to include new studies.

The updated evidence was examined in December 2016 at a consultation that included a wide range of stakeholders including global representation from clinicians with expertise in contraception and HIV, as well as representatives from affected populations, researchers and academics, epidemiologists, programme managers, policy-makers and guideline methodologists.

Image of statement

The promotion, protection and fulfilment of sexual and reproductive health and rights

Statement by the Scientific Technical and Advisory Group and the Gender and rights Advisory Panel on the importance of protecting global advances in sexual and reproductive health and rights and the challenges that will need to be overcome for further progress to be made.

Women at the centre: WHO issues new guidance on the sexual and reproductive health and rights of women living with HIV

21 February 2017 – A woman-centred approach to healthcare is one that consciously adopts the perspectives of women, their families and communities. This means that health services see women as active participants in, as well as beneficiaries of, trusted health systems that respond to women’s needs, rights and preferences in humane and holistic ways.

Launch of the Network to improve Quality of Care for Mothers, Newborns and Children

14 February 2017 – Many women, their babies and children still die, or suffer from life-long disabilities, even after reaching a health facility, due to poor care practices. Improving the quality of care provided is of utmost urgency. With a target of halving maternal and newborn deaths in facilities in 5 years, national governments from 9 first wave countries and partners are joining forces to establish a Network to improve the quality of care provided to mothers, newborns and children. The Network will support countries to achieve their Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and achieve the vision set out by the Global Strategy for Women’s, Children’s and Adolescents’ Health.

New Zika research in the American Region of WHO

12 February 2017 – Seventeen new research proposals aimed at identifying solutions to address the Zika virus will soon be starting in 7 Latin American countries. They range from identifying transmission risk factors to evaluating diagnostic tools and examining the use of prenatal counselling and contraceptives.


Online consultation: Revision of Definitions of Maternal Deaths

Online consultation: Draft Statement on Skilled Attendant at Birth


Request for Proposals (RFP)

Call for intention of interest:

The HRP Special Programme submits its research projects for consideration, comment, guidance and approval to an established advisory body of international experts to assess each project’s scientific design, as well as technical and financial/budgetary aspects. HRP research projects cover all topic areas of sexual and reproductive health and includes projects that involve human participants, involve biological material obtained from human participants, obtain information from human participants, access records on human participants or involve experiments in animals. The type of research under consideration is not restricted and includes: basic, biomedical, epidemiological, social science, as well as operations, implementation, health systems and programme development research. If you are currently, or have recently served on a research proposal/protocol review body technically assessing projects in sexual and reproductive health, and you are interested in being considered as a member of the HRP Research Project Review Panel, please submit your interest via e-mail to with your e-mail subject line reading “HRP Research Project Review Panel”. Please include a recent consolidated C.V, including a publication list as appropriate.


Journal articles

Front cover of the supplement

Journal of the International AIDS Society

Supplement: Achieving pregnancy safely by HIV-serodisdordant couples

Technical publications






Upcoming events


All RHR/HRP publications


Monthly electronic newsletter of new publications, research articles and events from the Department of Reproductive Health and Research


Strengthening the health system response to violence against women


TEDx Talks

Why we shouldn’t shy away from sexual education
Dr V. Chandra-Mouli, WHO/HRP

Stay informed

Monthly electronic newsletter of new publications, research articles and events from the Department of Reproductive Health and Research.