Council Commentary

Now: Levonorgestrel IUS Available in Afghanistan

In 2003, Population Council and Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals teamed up to create the International Contraceptive Access (ICA) Foundation—a collaboration working to meet the reproductive needs of women in resource-poor settings, primarily in developing countries. Working with local service-delivery organizations, the Foundation provides the Council-developed LNG IUS (levonorgestrel releasing intrauterine system)—a long-acting reversible hormonal contraceptive method—on a not-for-profit basis to selected public-sector organizations. Since December 2012, nearly 50,000 LNG IUS have been delivered.

The Foundation’s most recent accomplishment was in Afghanistan where the first shipment of LNG IUS was received this month. According to Davena Witcher, BSRB, executive director of American Medical Overseas Relief, “This is a monumental success for the women of Afghanistan as this is the first new reproductive health medication approved by the Ministries in ten years.”

The ICA Foundation is currently working with organizations such as Marie Stopes International, Partners in Health, International Planned Parenthood Federation, International Rescue Committee, and AmeriCares to ensure that efficient programs are reaching women and families in poor areas of the developing world.  For more information about the ICA Foundation, please visit