News & Updates

Obstetric fistula stories and announcements


23 Jun 2020 Updates

End gender inequality! End health inequities! End fistula now!

Statement by UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Natalia Kanem on the International Day to End Obstetric Fistula

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19 May 2019 Updates

Fistula is a human rights violation – end it now!

Statement of UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Natalia Kanem on the International Day to End Obstetric Fistula, 23 May 2019


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21 Nov 2016 Updates

UN Committee calls to end fistula within a generation

United Nations, New York – The Committee on Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Issues of the United Nations General Assembly adopted a UNFPA-backed resolution today that calls upon the international community to end fistula within a generation.

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18 Dec 2015 Updates

UN General Assembly enshrines call for intensified efforts to end fistula

United Nations, New York – The United Nations General Assembly adopted a UNFPA-backed resolution on obstetric fistula on 18 December 2014, which calls for stepped-up actions to end the condition.

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13 Jun 2014 Updates

Fistula surgeon recognized with UN Population Award

Dr. Marchesini, originally from Italy, learned to treat obstetric fistula in 1973, while training at a hospital in Uganda. He knew immediately that he would devote his life to the cause.

The following year, 1974, I went to Mozambique and I began to operate on every woman appearing in my hospital,” Dr. Marchesini said. Those who arrived for treatment were “suffering and rejected women,” he explained.

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13 Nov 2013 Updates

Taking stock: Ten years fighting fistula in Niger

Niger’s ten years of engagement in the fight against obstetric fistula has borne fruit, concluded a workshop held from 8 to 10 October 2013 in the capital Niamey. Organized by UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, the even gathered more than 70 health professionals and partners working to end obstetric fistula in several countries.

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05 Aug 2013 Updates

Christmas in April for the fistula-repaired women of Ebonyi State

Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, Nigeria — For the 35 women and young girls clad in orange UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund t-shirts, it felt like early Christmas in the middle of April, as they prepared to re-join their families after undergoing successful surgeries to repair obstetric fistula. And to see them off at the Ebonyi health centre was the State First Lady, Josephine Elechi, and the UNFPA Representative in Nigeria, Victoria Akyeampong.

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23 May 2013 Updates

Pathway to stopping fistula

As illustrated by this infographic, the road to obstetric fistula is fraught with delays: delays in the progression of labour, delays in getting to an appropriate facility, delays in getting the proper health treatment.

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27 Jul 2012 Updates

Mobile Phones + Fistula: What’s Next?

A new film by Emmy winning film maker Lisa Russell documenting how mobile technology is facilitating fistula treatment in Tanzania had its premiere at the historic Zanzibar International Film Festival—ZIFF, East Africa’s largest film and music gathering, in July. The film, produced with support by UNFPA and the Campaign to End Fistula, was chosen to be part of ZIFF’s Women’s Panorama program which brings select films to screen in the villages.

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