Safeguarding gains in the Sexual and Reproductive Health and AIDS Response amidst COVID-19: The Role of African Civil Society

Rouzeh Eghtessadi, Zindoga Mukandavire, Farirai Mutenherwa, Diego F. Cuadros, Godfrey Musuka

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Abstract

This article outlines the role of African civil society in safeguarding gains registered to date in sexual and reproductive health and the response to HIV. The case is made for why civil society organizations (CSOs) must be engaged vigilantly in the COVID-19 response in Africa. Lockdown disruptions and the rerouting of health funds to the pandemic have impeded access to essential sexual and reproductive health (SRH) and social protection services. Compounded by pre-existing inequalities faced by vulnerable populations, the poor SRH outcomes amid COVID-19 call for CSOs to intensify demand for the accountability of governments. CSOs should also continue to persevere in their aim to rapidly close community-health facility gaps and provide safety nets to mitigate the gendered impact of COVID-19.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)286-291
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Infectious Diseases
Volume100
Early online date10 Sep 2020
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 10 Sep 2020

Keywords

  • Africa
  • COVID-19
  • CSOs
  • Civil society
  • Gender
  • Sexual and reproductive health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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