Happy 70th Birthday, FIGO!

The International Federation of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (FIGO) first convened in Switzerland in 1954 and brought together professional Ob/Gyn societies from 42 nations. FIGO has been collaborating with WHO for nearly as long and has now expanded to 139 countries.

Although long a champion of women’s health, wellbeing and rights – and particularly active in the Global South – FIGO has not previously emphasised preconception/interconception health, education and care as a priority. This may be starting to change. In February 2024, it published ‘FIGO Preconception Checklist: A valuable new tool to address health risks during the preconception period ‘.

As the Checklist notes: ‘The preconception period is a ‘window of opportunity’. ‘Addressing health risks and establishing healthier habits during the preconception period is important to the prevention of maternal and foetal mortality and morbidity. Preconception care involves biomedical, behavioural and social health interventions prior to conception for women and couples.’ 

This Checklist is very welcome, but it could, and should, be improved over time. For instance, it does not address either teratogenic medications or the health history of the prospective father. Nonetheless there is no doubt that the routine use of this checklist would help most women better prepare for pregnancy.

Read more:

FIGO (2024) FIGO Preconception Checklist: Preconception care for mother and baby.
Available at: https://www.figo.org/news/figo-preconception-checklist-valuable-new-tool-address-health-risks-during-preconception#:~:text=The%20FIGO%20Preconception%20Checklist%20addresses,and%20inadequate%20inter%2Dpregnancy%20intervals.

© 2020 The International Journal of Birth and Parent Education
REGISTERED OFFICE: 2 Stone Buildings, Lincoln's Inn, London WC2A 3TH

Website Designed by: Hotlobster Design Ltd