Take Stock - Not all stockouts are created equal

Publication date: 2015

Stockouts are so commonplace in low- and middle-income countries, resourceful people just learn to adapt. No bread? Buy rice instead. No milk? Water will have to do. But some stockouts can change the course of a person’s life. Finding a shelf empty of the right contraceptive is the same as finding no contraceptive at all. And because a woman’s ability to plan her family affects the world around her, stockouts ripple through her loved ones, her community, her country. That’s why this issue is more than just a supply chain failure, but a root cause of many other development challenges. People leaving clinics without the contraceptive supplies they need are not just leaving empty- handed. They’re returning to a world that the empty shelf has made less secure. In response, the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition (RHSC) launched TAKE STOCK, which mobilizes public health leaders, facilitates the development of a common language we can all use to talk about stockouts, and gathers the commitments needed to spur real action. Not all stockouts are created equal. NOEMPTYSHELVES.ORG Take Stock is an initiative of the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition. The Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition is a global partnership of public, private and non- governmental organizations working together to ensure that all people can choose, access and use affordable, high- quality reproductive health products. Since 2004, the Coalition has been at the forefront of international efforts to secure reproductive health supplies by increasing resources, strengthening systems, and harnessing the power of partnership. Learn more at noemptyshelves.org. Everyone has a role to play if we are to resolve contraceptive stockouts once and for all. Doing so will take more than the Coalition’s investment. To be successful, we need commitment from key players at all levels to join and take action—whether it is advocating for policy changes, measuring stockouts at the facility level, training staff to collect stockout data, adopting the Coalition’s harmonized stockout indicators, or allocating money towards improving supply chain functioning. Join Take Stock and become a member of a community that realizes everyone has a role to play if we are to resolve this problem once and for all. For more information about Take Stock, please contact us at takestock@rhsupplies.org. Join TAKE STOCK!

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