“This is exciting because it is likely the most comprehensive collection of publicly available stockout data using the universal indicator,” said Ellen T. Tompsett, Senior Program Officer, Reducing Stockouts with the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition.
Take Stock advocates that all countries, donors and public health organizations report on the Universal Stockout Indicator in order to bring alignment to stockout data – and to motivate real action to resolve the problem of stockouts.
Why is resolving the problem of stockouts so important? The 2015 progress report answers this question clearly:
“Reducing contraceptive supply stock-outs is a critical measure of FP2020’s success. We cannot address unmet need without ensuring that family planning providers are consistently offering a wide range of contraceptive methods to women and couples. Capturing stock-out data by method will help guide policy decisions to improve access to contraception as well as improve stock management.”
The Universal Stockout Indicator is definied as: The percentage of facilities stocked out, by family planning product or method offered, on the day of the assessment (reporting day or day of visit).
The Universal Stockout Indicator is arguably the most reliable measurement of stockouts, the most feasible to collect and track, and the most easily understood. By adopting the universal indicator, countries, donors and communities will be able to track progress, find the root causes of stockouts and replicate successful strategies to resolve them.
Although only 14 of FP2020’s 69 focus countries reported on stockouts using the Universal Stockout Indicator in 2014, this stockout indicator is becoming the benchmark indicator. Beginning in 2016, stockouts by method, at the facility level, will be measured by all UNFPA surveys.
The full FP2020 progress report can be found here.