Periods in a pandemic – menstrual hygiene management in the time of COVID-19


Our partners, Plan International have released a global report for World MHM day: Periods in a pandemic – menstrual hygiene management in the time of COVID-19.  

“From to Kenya to Nepal, to Australia, Ireland and Cambodia, COVID-19 lockdowns are causing big problems for people who menstruate. Periods don’t stop during a pandemic, but managing them has become a whole lot harder,” Plan International Australia’s CEO Susanne Legena said.

View the Report on Plan's website 

This report draws on a survey of more than 60 professionals working in the field of menstrual hygiene management, water, sanitation and hygiene and sexual reproductive health rights across 30 countries, including in two of Plan's Water for Women project countries, and presents some alarming findings:

Key findings from the Periods in a Pandemic report: 

Have you observed the following as a result of COVID-19?


Restricted access to products, through shortages or disrupted supply chains


Restricted access to facilities to help change, clean and dispose of sanitary products


An increase in price of products


Lack of access to information and services


Reduced access to clean water to manage periods


A less hygienic environment for disposal of products


Increased stigma, shaming or harmful cultural practices










Those who lack access to basic sanitation facilities, typically lack access to sanitary products to manage their periods hygienically and safely. This everyday challenge is regularly compounded by the lack of privacy and dignity afforded to menstruating women, girls and gender non-binary people, due to the debilitating stigma and taboos associated with menstruation that exist in every culture. It should go without saying that these challenges of access and stigma are magnified for women and girls with a disability.


This report recevied some great coverage on #MHDAY2020 (28th May):

ABC's Pacific Beat: COVID-19 panic buying has left women struggling to buy essential period products

Women's Agenda: Periods don’t stop for pandemics, in fact, they get worse

Reuters: Pandemic worsens pain of periods for women across the world: NGO


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