CHICAGO, Dec. 6, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Female Health Company (NASDAQ: FHCO) today announced that on World AIDS Day, December 1, 2011, the British Government pledged five million pounds (approximately $7.8 M) for the purchase of female condoms to enhance reproductive health needs of women. The fund, which will be channeled through the Department of International Development to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) is additional to the 35 million pounds generally provided for contraceptive supplies to save the lives of thousands of women who urgently need contraception supplies.
The British International Development Minister Stephen O'Brian made the announcement at a plenary session on "Family Planning and HIV: Strange Bedfellows No More" at the on-going second international conference on Family Planning in Dakar. Mr. O'Brian said AIDS is a major cause of maternal deaths in high prevalence countries and there is the need to put in measures to address and halt the spread of the virus. The British Minister said there is the urgent need for a comprehensive approach that will ensure the integration of quality sexual reproductive health, including prevention of the HIV/AIDS virus, and family planning needs. He explained that millions of unintended pregnancies occur every year because 215 million women who want desperately to delay or avoid their pregnancies are not able to do so. He said the provision of the fund will ensure that two million unintended pregnancies are prevented. O.B. Parrish, Chairman and C.E.O. of The Female Health Company, noted that "the Company lauds the British Government for its concern and support of women's reproductive health concerns world-wide". About The Female Health Company The Female Health Company, based in Chicago, Illinois, manufactures and markets the FC2 Female Condom® (FC2), which is available in the U.S. and in about 120 other countries globally. The Company owns certain worldwide rights to the FC2 Female Condom®, including patents that have been issued in the U.S., the European Union, Canada, Australia, South Africa, Japan, The People's Republic of China, Spain, Mexico, Greece, Turkey and the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO), which includes Botswana, The Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Swaziland, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe. FC2 patent applications are pending in various countries. The FC2 Female Condom® is the only available FDA-approved product controlled by a woman that offers dual protection against sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS, and unintended pregnancy. The World Health Organization (WHO) has cleared FC2 for purchase by U.N. agencies.