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[Event Report] The First Meeting of the Advisory Board on “Building a Reproductive Health Platform – Pursuing a Society That Provides Every Young Person Education and Consultation Opportunities” (September 15, 2021)

[Event Report] The First Meeting of the Advisory Board on “Building a Reproductive Health Platform – Pursuing a Society That Provides Every Young Person Education and Consultation Opportunities” (September 15, 2021)

On September 15, 2021, the Health and Global Policy Institute (HGPI) Women’s Health Project convened the first meeting of the advisory board on “Building a Reproductive Health Platform – Pursuing a Society That Provides Every Young Person Education and Consultation Opportunities.”

The theme of this meeting was “Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR).” Some people in Japan may be unfamiliar with the term “SRHR,” so we aim to increase awareness toward the concept of SRHR over the course of this initiative. SRHR has drawn global attention in response to concerns raised at the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) in 1994 and was included among the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Many people in Japan suffer from issues such as menstruation-related symptoms, sexually transmitted diseases, infertility, and menopausal disorders. In addition, there are still many cases of unintended pregnancy, sexual violence, and sexual abuse. Against this backdrop, recognition toward the importance of having accurate knowledge about one’s own body and awareness toward one’s right to self-determination are insufficient among people of all genders. Society must enable each person to enjoy a greater variety of options in life and achieve well-being.

For people to understand SRHR correctly, education will be crucial. In recognition of this fact, HGPI provided a comprehensive health education program for university students based on global standards set by the International Technical Guidance on Sexuality Education and similar resources. The results of a study we conducted in 2019 to verify that program’s effectiveness suggested there is a need for comprehensive health education provided on a continuous basis, for the establishment of a framework for encouraging behavioral change, and for systems and policies to ensure this movement does not end up being a temporary effort.

In light of the above, this year, the HGPI Women’s Health Project has launched a project titled, “Building a Reproductive Health Platform.” As part of this project, we will hold advisory board meetings with multi-stakeholders from industry, Government, academia, and civil society and will formulate and publish policy recommendations based on knowledge gathered at those meetings. At the advisory board’s first meeting, we held a discussion on our desired future in terms of SRHR and current challenges for achieving that future.

We will continue working to achieve a society in which the people who will shoulder the future have accurate SRHR knowledge and can readily seek medical care and consultations.


■ Meeting overview
Date and time: Wednesday, September 15, 2021; from 13:00 to 15:00
Host: HGPI
Format: Online using the Zoom conferencing system

■ Program

Status Report on HGPI’s “Building a Reproductive Health Platform” Project
 Yuko Imamura (Manager, HGPI)
 Ryuta Saito (Program Specialist, HGPI)

Discussion on “The Future of SRHR and Issues to Address”

Advisory Board
(Titles omitted; in alphabetical order)
Kazuko Fukuda (Representative, Nande Naino Project)
Ayumi Kinoshita (Pediatric Pulmonologist, Shikoku Medical Center for Children and Adults)
Miho Konishi (Newscaster and Commentator, Nippon TV)
Emiko Nishioka (Professor, Division of Nursing, School of Medicine, National Defense Medical College)
Tomiko Okamoto (Director, Kanagawa Prefecture Midwives Association; President, Okamoto Maternity Center, UPAUPAHOUSE okamotojosanin)
Mariko Sato (Director, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Representation Office in Japan)
Yasuhiro Sensho (CEO, SENSHO-GUMI, Co., Ltd.; Former Director-General, MHLW)
Song Mihyon (Director, Marunouchi no Mori Ladies Clinic)
Amina Sugimoto (CEO, fermata inc.)
Sachiko Takahashi (Assistant Professor, Saitama Medical University)
Kyoko Tanebe (Member, Toyama Prefectural Assembly; Representative Director, Obstetrician-gynecologist, Women’s Clinic We! TOYAMA)
Ruriko Tsushima (President, Japan Women Foundation; President, Women’s Clinic Network)
Yasunori Yoshimura (Professor Emeritus, Keio University)

Special Advisors
Mizuho Fukushima (Member, House of Councillors)
Noriko Furuya (Member, House of Representatives)
Takae Ito (Member, House of Councillors)
Hanako Jimi (Member, House of Councillors)
Kiyoshi Kurokawa (Chairman, HGPI)
Takuma Miyaji (Member, House of Representatives)
Mizuho Umemura (Member, House of Councillors)
Yoshiaki Wada (Member, House of Representatives)

Observers (Titles omitted; in alphabetical order)
Tomoko Hayashi (Director General for Gender Equality Bureau, Cabinet Office)
Kakushi Matsumura (Director, Office for Promotion of Women’s Health, Health Service Division, Health Service Bureau, Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare)
Kuniaki Tsuji (Deputy Director and Senior Specialist for Career Planning, Higher Education Bureau, Student Support and Exchange Division, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Education, Science and Technology)

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