Sexual and reproductive health

Optimizing the health workforce for effective family planning services

Policy brief


WHO, Department of Reproductive Health and Research

Front cover

Publication details

Number of pages: 4
Publication date: 2012
Languages: English
WHO reference number: WHO/RHR/12.19


There is a global shortage of at least 3.5 million health-care workers, including doctors, nurses, midwives and community health workers. The severe shortage of skilled healthcare workers trained in family planning and contraception provision is a key constraint to improving access to family planning services for many women, men, girls and their families. The current network of health-care providers fails to reach some of the most vulnerable groups: the unmarried, the young, the poor, migrants and rural women.