As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to grip nations around the world, many women in the Philippines are facing limited access to birth control with stay-at-home orders in place.
More than 214,000 unplanned babies will be born in 2021, according to projections by the University of the Philippines.
And all these babies will be born into hospitals already overwhelmed by 1.7 million births a year.
The Philippines has a population over 110 million people, the second highest in Southeast Asia.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, hunger and unemployment in the country have reached historic highs.
New findings from the country's pollster, Social Weather Stations, show four million families have experienced involuntary hunger at least once in the past three months.
The country has launched family-planning programs to prevent unintended pregnancies in vulnerable communities.
“We saw in the past, during the lifetimes of our parents or grandparents, the significant increase in birth rates after a major adverse event. This is the reason why family planning is even more important” amid the coronavirus crisis, Commission on Population Development chief Juan Antonio Perez said in a statement released by Bayer Philippines Inc., which is supporting the commission’s program.