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Disparities in access to sexual and reproductive health services

Guest Editors:
Khurshed Alam: (Bangladesh Institute of Social Research, Bangladesh)
Leonardo Chavane: (Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, Mozambique)
Sutapa Neogi: (International Institute of Health Management Research, India)
Kath Peters: (Western Sydney University, Australia)



New Content ItemThe Editors of BMC Women's Health and BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth published articles on “Disparities in access to sexual and reproductive health services,” to focus on barriers to universal access to sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services and possible solutions. The Sustainable Development Goals call for "universal access to sexual and reproductive health services.” While progress has been made towards this target, universal access to SRH services is far from being achieved.

Meet the Guest Editors

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New Content ItemKhurshed Alam
Dr Khurshed Alam, a professional social scientist, is a leading sociologist of South Asia. He is the pioneer Sociologist of applied social research in the country apart from academia. Currently, he is the Chairman of the Bangladesh Institute of Social Research (BISR) which is one of the leading research organizations in the country in the fields of sociology and anthropology. Along with BISR, he pursued many applied social studies through renowned global and local organizations like World Bank, ADB, JICA, BIDS and so on. His research areas of interest include poverty reduction, social change, people’s participation in development, gender-inclusive development, climate change and disaster, institutional development, political system, and good governance. In 2008 he was recruited by the Planning Commission, Government of Bangladesh for preparing the national plan called PRSP-II. He also attempted to develop several theories, concepts, and models in the field of social sciences in general and the Bangladesh context in particular. He has authored many scientific peer-reviewed articles, book chapters, and 9 books. His 3 articles were regarded as the best articles in those journals. Currently, he is also an editorial board member of BMC Women’s Health published by Springer Nature. He works as a referee for many world-reputed journals including World Development.

New Content ItemLeonardo Chavane
Leonardo Chavane is a Medical Doctor, who specializes in Public Health with a PhD in Health Science from the University of Ghent, Belgium. Has 25 years of combined clinical and public health experience. His areas of interest include Health Policy development and evaluation, Health Systems and Services organization, management, and evaluation with a focus on Maternal and Child Health, and Reproductive health. Started his career in 1997 as Medical Office and District Health Team Director in Cabo Delgado Province of Mozambique. From 2008 to 2012 he was appointed National Deputy Director of Public Health at the Ministry of Health in Mozambique. Dr Chavane has an extensive University Lecturing experience for undergraduate, Master, and supervision of Doctoral Students including research activities that resulted in publications in peer-reviewed journals mainly in the area of Reproductive and Maternal Health.

New Content ItemSutapa B. Neogi
Dr Sutapa B. Neogi is a public health specialist and presently the Director of the International Institute of Health Management Research (IIHMR), Delhi. She has a rich experience in public health and is particularly interested in the implementation of epidemiological and clinical research-based projects centered around Maternal and Child health, and those with great relevance to national policies and programmes. She seeks to nurture researchers and bring people together who could be effective linkages between disciplines, and promote interdisciplinary research in the country.

New Content ItemKath Peters
Professor Kath Peters is the Associate Dean (International and Engagement) in the School of Nursing and Midwifery at Western Sydney University. She has successfully led multiple research projects to completion, ensuring research outcomes with over 150 publications in peer-reviewed journals. Her research encompasses marginalised populations and women’s sexual and reproductive health.

About the Collection

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New Content Item

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provide a framework for progress towards a just and equitable society.  SDG 3, “Good health and wellbeing,” and SDG 5, “Gender equality,” each include a target to “ensure universal access to sexual and reproductive health services.”  While progress has been made towards this target, universal access to sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services is far from being achieved.

BMC Women’s Health and BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth launched a Collection, “Disparities in access to sexual and reproductive health services,” to focus on barriers to universal access to SRH services and possible solutions.  Topics of interest included, but are not limited to, disparities related to race, ethnicity, age, dis/ability, sexual orientation, and geographical and socioeconomic factors. Good practices and case studies highlighting interventions to promote access were also of interest to the global audience. 

In addition to baseline disparities in access to SRH care, the Collection was interested in research highlighting how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected these disparities, both positively and negatively.


  1. Pregnant people who use unregulated drugs (PPWUD) are at high risk of health complications yet experience a range of barriers to sexual and reproductive health care. Given that improving maternal health and ac...

    Authors: Holly Mathias, Lesley Ann Foster and Ashleigh Rushton
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2024 24:72
  2. Potentially life-threatening maternal conditions (PLTCs) is an important proxy indicator of maternal mortality and the quality of maternal health services. It is helpful to monitor the rates of severe maternal...

    Authors: Fitiwi Tinsae Baykemagn, Girmatsion Fisseha Abreha, Yibrah Berhe Zelelow, Abadi Kidanemariam Berhe and Alemayehu Bayray Kahsay
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2024 24:11
  3. Retained placenta is a concern during labor and delivery. However, recent data regarding the profiles of retained placenta are scarce, especially nationwide and in minority populations. This study aimed to inv...

    Authors: Wen Jiang, Wei Chen and Dong Li
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2023 23:783
  4. In the context of increased global mobility, it is fundamental to understand migrants’ needs and how governments can ensure equal health opportunities for both regular and irregular migrants simply by applying...

    Authors: Caterina Montagnoli and Philippe Wanner
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2023 23:567
  5. Linking family planning with infant vaccination care has the potential to increase contraceptive use among postpartum women in rural settings. We explored the multilevel factors that can facilitate or impede u...

    Authors: Sarah Averbach, Edwin Elizabeth Thomas, Gennifer Kully, Melody Nazarbegian, Mohan Ghule, Borsika A. Rabin, Anita Raj and Nandita Bhan
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2023 23:519
  6. Improving access to sexual and reproductive health remains a public health challenge, especially for women, whose access is affected by several determinants, such as gender inequality, which is the underlying ...

    Authors: Hajar Ouahid, Adil Mansouri, Majda Sebbani, Nadia Nouari, Fatima Ezzahra Khachay, Mohamed Cherkaoui, Mohamed Amine and Latifa Adarmouch
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2023 23:407
  7. The Indigenous Birth Support Worker (IBSW) Program provides Indigenous women with respectful, culturally safe, and trauma-informed care and supports women and families during labor and delivery. Located in the...

    Authors: Mamata Pandey, Leanne Smith, Nicole MacZek, Angela Tomkins and JoLee Sasakamoose
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2023 23:367
  8. Racial disparities exist in maternal morbidity and mortality, with most of these events occurring in healthy pregnant people. A known driver of these outcomes is unplanned cesarean birth. Less understood is to...

    Authors: Nicole S. Carlson, Madelyn S. Carlson, Elise N. Erickson, Melinda Higgins, Abby J. Britt and Alexis Dunn Amore
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2023 23:342
  9. Globally, there are disparities in access to maternal health care services and equity in maternal health outcomes between Indigenous and non-Indigenous populations. While the literature is growing, it has not ...

    Authors: Meagan Bacciaglia, Hannah Tait Neufeld, Elena Neiterman, Akanksha Krishnan, Sophie Johnston and Kyla Wright
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2023 23:327
  10. Pregnancy and early infancy are increased risk periods for severe adverse effects of respiratory infections. Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander (respectfully referred to as First Nations) women and child...

    Authors: Lisa McHugh, Annette K Regan, Mohinder Sarna, Hannah C Moore, Paul Van Buynder, Gavin Pereira, Christopher C Blyth, Karin Lust, Ross M Andrews, Kristy Crooks, Peter Massey and Michael J Binks
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2023 23:314
  11. According to International Convention on the Right of Person with Disabilities (CRPD), all nations should discern Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) as human rights and needs of all people living with disabi...

    Authors: Bayew Kelkay Rade, Animut Tagele Tamiru, Getie Lake Aynalem, Eden Bishaw Taye, Mamaru Melkie, Alamirew Abera, Endeshaw Admassu Cherkos and Mengstu Melkamu Asaye
    Citation: BMC Women's Health 2023 23:215
  12. Reducing maternal mortality ratio (MMR) has been a worldwide public health challenge for a long time. Utilization of maternal health services including antenatal care (ANC), institutional delivery (ID), and p...

    Authors: Yuxuan Yang and Min Yu
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2023 23:115
  13. The differences in maternal mortality between developed and developing countries is due to differences in use of antenatal and delivery services. The study was designed to determine the views of women on utili...

    Authors: Edmund Ndudi Ossai, Irene Ifeyinwa Eze, Pearl Chizobam Eke, Cosmas Kenan Onah, Chibuike Agu and Lawrence Ulu Ogbonnaya
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2023 23:1
  14. COVID-19 presented an unprecedented global public health challenge because of its rapid and relentless spread, and many countries instituted lockdowns to prevent the spread of infection. Although this strategy...

    Authors: Mary-Grace Nakate, Sean Mackay, Eunice Ndirangu-Mugo and Valerie Fleming
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:938
  15. The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in unprecedented challenges to healthcare systems worldwide, including interruption of antenatal care services. The study aimed to determine the utilization of antenatal care ser...

    Authors: Glaiza S. de Guzman and Maria Jesusa B. Banal-Silao
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:929

Submission guidelines

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This Collection welcomes submission of Research Articles, Data Notes, Case Reports, Study Protocols, and Database Articles. Before submitting your manuscript, please ensure you have read the submission guidelines of the journal you are submitting to: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth and BMC Women's Health. Articles for this Collection should be submitted via our submission system, Snapp: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth and BMC Women's Health. During the submission process you will be asked whether you are submitting to a Collection, please select "Disparities in access to sexual and reproductive health services" from the dropdown menu.

Articles will undergo the standard peer-review process of the journal they are considered in (BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth and BMC Women's Health), and are subject to all of the journal’s standard policies. Articles will be added to the Collection as they are published.

The Guest Editors have no competing interests with the submissions which they handle through the peer review process. The peer review of any submissions for which the Guest Editors have competing interests is handled by another Editorial Board Member who has no competing interests.