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Cambodia

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OVERVIEW

In Cambodia, you can purchase contraception (birth control) without a prescription. You can also obtain emergency contraception (the morning after pill) without a prescription at a pharmacy, or at a health center. There are no travel or residency restrictions attached to STD/STI status. You can get tested for STDs/STIs at health care facilities in the city, which we recommend below, and there are some HIV-related NGOs and organizations in the city. There is currently no PrEp program in Cambodia. There is an HPV vaccination pilot program. Regarding menstrual products, you should be able to find pads throughout Cambodia. You can tampons in larger cities, like Phnom Penh, as well as some menstrual cups. Abortion is legal for the first 12 weeks of pregnancy.

Contraception (Birth Control)[edit]

General Note: There are many types of contraceptives, also known as "birth control," including IUDs, oral contraceptives, patches, shots, and condoms, etc. If you would like to view a full list, click here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit]

In Cambodia, you can purchase birth control pills without a prescription. In 2015, it was estimated that 57.9% of Cambodian women used some form of contraception, and that 40.4% used modern contraceptive methods. Furthermore, 12.5% of Cambodian women have unmet family planning needs.[1]

During the Khmer Rouge period (1975-79), the Cambodian health care system was destroyed. After the fall of the Khmer Rouge to Vietnamese forces, the government entered a period of Vietnamese control, which showed little progress related to family planning. However, in 1994, Cambodian family planning efforts were finally reinstated with international support. Since 2000, the efforts of the Cambodian government along with non-governmental agencies have helped boost contraceptive usage, ushering in improved reproductive health and lower fertility rates. Between 2000 and 2005, the rate of contraceptive use jumped from 11% to 24%, and the fertility rate dropped from 4.0 to 3.4.[2]

According to a 2010 Guttmacher Institute report, "Despite these gains, shortcomings in family planning service delivery and acceptance in Cambodia remain." Generally speaking, Cambodian women who are older, more educated, living in higher income brackets and living in urban areas are more likely to use contraceptives. Women in rural areas are less likely to use contraceptives. Furthermore, while most Cambodian women report knowing a modern contraceptive method, and while there are many low-cost contraceptive options in Cambodia, they are not always adopted by women. This can be partially attributed to social and cultural influences. It has been found that many women are heavily reliant upon the opinions of their husbands, communities and elders when deciding whether to use contraceptives.[3]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit]

  • If you want birth control pills, you can purchase them at pharmacies without a prescription. Some of the brands you can expect to see are FMP, Anna and Microgynon ED. One of the most common brands is called OK. It's been reported that some wealthier locals don't feel that they can trust OK pills because they're cheap. But, according to the Phnom Penh Post, "The pills and condoms are heavily subsidised and quality-controlled by Population Services International, a global health NGO, who target the OK brand at poor women. According to Watson the OK pill is the same as a very popular pill called Microgynan, currently prescribed to 70 percent of women in the UK."[4]
  • Please visit our local city pages, like the Phnom Penh page, for recommendations on getting IUDs, patches, shots, implants and other contraceptive methods.

Tips about pharmacies: Look for the green cross to find a pharmacy. The better pharmacies will have air-con and English-speaking staff. Be careful to go to a trusted pharmacy. Some of the pharmacies in Phnom Penh sell expired or fake medicine. So be sure to only buy medication that is clearly brands, doesn't look damaged or blistered, and hasn't expired. Don't buy unmarked tablets or medicine.

Costs[edit]

You can buy Anlitin at Western Pharmacy for $2.30 (as of 2016).

Emergency Contraception (Morning After Pill)[edit]

Important Notes: Emergency contraception may prevent pregnancy for three days (72 hours) and sometimes five days (120 hours) after unprotected sex. Take EC as soon as possible after unprotected sex. If you don't have access to dedicated EC, oral contraceptives can be used as replacement EC, but remember the following: 1) Only some contraceptives work as EC 2) Different contraceptives require different dosages and time schedules to work as EC 3) You must only use the first 21 pills in 28-day packs and 4) They may be less effective than dedicated EC. For general information on emergency contraceptives, click here and here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit]

You can purchase emergency contraception (the morning after pill) without a prescription in Cambodia. It's very common for women to visit pharmacies and purchase EC over-the-counter. Some brands, like Anitlin and Pregnon, may require a prescription, according to Cambodian law,[5] but we're not sure how widely this law is enforced. Furthermore, some other brands may not require a prescription. Some health clinics and NGOs, like Marie Stopes, require that you have a brief consultation with a midwife before they give you EC.

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit]

Here is the most critical information about emergency contraception (the morning after pill) in Phnom Penh:

  • You can purchase dedicated emergency contraception at pharmacies. You can expect to find Pregnon (take 2 pills within 120 hours after unprotected sex). Another brand you may find is Anlitin.[6]
  • If you can't access dedicated emergency contraception, you can use oral contraceptives (birth control pills) as EC. You can purchase oral contraceptives at pharmacies as well. For progestin-only pills, you can take Microval (take 50 pills within 120 hours after unprotected sex). For progestin-estrogen combined pills, you can take FMP (take 2 pills within 120 hours after unprotected sex and take 2 more pills 12 hours later). You can also take Anna or Microgynon ED (take 4 pills within 120 hours after unprotected sex and take 4 more pills 12 hours later). You should remember that, in 28-day packs, only the first 21 pills can be used.[7]

Here are some places where you can access emergency contraception (the morning after pill) that aren't pharmacies. These places also usually provide emergency contraception for free or at a reduced price:

  • Marie Stopes Cambodia: This NGO sells emergency contraception (the morning after pill) for 20,000 riel (for Cambodian nationals). It will be a different price for non-Cambodians.
  • Population Services Khmer (PSK): This NGO may give you Next 72, an emergency contraceptive pill that they launched in 2013, or an IUD. You can get ahold of PSK by phone (855-23) 210 814 / 9 87 404 / 987 406 or email: generalinfo@psk.org.kh. Here's more information on Next 72. Address: No. 29, 334 Street, P.O.Box 153, Boeung Keng Kang 1, Chamkarmon, Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Facebook: link here.
  • Anna Women-Baby's Center: This is a private clinic - not an NGO - so they probably don't provide EC at a reduced price. However, they can probably give sensitized and higher quality care than some public clinics. "Women-Baby’s Center offers the “Morning After Pill” for those who need emergency contraception. We recommend going through our family planning counseling for fertility awareness and for learning how to practice safe sex." Schedule your family planning appointment today by dialing 098 800 921. Email: info@wbcanna.com

Costs[edit]

Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs/STDs)[edit]

Important Notes - Learn about PEP and PrEP: If you think that you've been recently exposed to HIV (i.e. within 72 hours), seek out PEP (Post-Exposure Prophylaxis). It's a month-long treatment to prevent HIV infection after exposure, and it may be available in your city. Take PEP as soon as possible. For more information, click here. If you are at risk of HIV exposure, seek out PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis). It's a daily oral pill that can prevent HIV infection before exposure. To learn more about PrEP, click here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit]

There are no travel restrictions attached to STD/STI status in Cambodia. Furthermore, foreign residents who are found to have an STD/STI will not be deported.[8]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit]

Testing Facilities[edit]

  • Please visit our local city pages, like the Phnom Penh page, for testing sites.

Support[edit]

  • Marie Stopes Cambodia: "Counselling and support is offered however it would be difficult to offer this service to non-Cambodian nationals primarily due to language barriers. Whilst there are staff with a good command of English this is not always appropriate for counselling. Although it is case by case and via booking through email we would endeavor to find an appropriate solution. Family planning and abortion counselling is free and part of any service."
  • Hospital Calmette: This hospital has an HIV treatment center. Address: No. 3 Monivong Blvd., Phnom Penh. Phone: +855 23 426 948. Fax: +855 23 810 785.
  • Norodom Sihanouk Hospital: This hospital has an HIV treatment center. Address: No. 363, St. 241. Phone: +855 23 723 273. Fax: +855 23 982 571.
  • Center of Hope: This is an HIV-focused NGO in Cambodia. Address: c/o Municipal Hospital, No. 169, St. 134, Phnom Penh. Phone: +855 23 982 571. Fax: +855 23 822 808.
  • Cambodian HIV/AIDS Education and Care: "Since 1994, Cambodian HIV/AIDS Education and Care (CHEC), formerly Quaker Services Australia, has been reducing the spread of HIV/AIDS and helping Cambodians cope with the epidemic. Training people is its core service. And since inception, more than 10,000 people have received CHEC is HIV/AIDS training."
  • National Center for HIV/AIDS, Dermatology and STD: "The National Centre for HIV/AIDS Dermatology and STDs (NCHADS) was established in 1998 following the amalgamation of the National Aids Programme (NAP) and the National STD and Dermatology Clinic. Since then, its primary purpose has been to respond to the HIV/AIDS epidemic through the implementation of HIV/AIDS Strategic Plans." Address: #245H, Sreet 6A, Phum Kean Khlang, Sangkat Prekleap Russey Keo, Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Tel/Fax: (855) 23 432 090. Email: info@nchads.org.

Costs[edit]

Medications & Vaccines[edit]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit]

  • There is a pilot HPV vaccination program in Cambodia.[9]
  • There is no known PrEP program in Cambodia.[10]

Costs[edit]

Menstruation[edit]

Note: In addition to pads and tampons, you can also use menstrual cups and menstrual underwear for your period. To learn more about menstrual cups, click here. To learn more about menstrual underwear, click here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit]

In Cambodia, pads can be easily found in supermarkets and mini-marts. You should be able to find tampons in larger cities at larger supermarkets or pharmacies, like Lucky’s Supermarkets or a U-Care Pharmacy. You can purchase menstrual cups at Western Pharmacy in Phnom Penh, Peace Cafe in Siem Reap and Bantreay's Women Spa in Kampot. You can also purchase Lunette online through LiveLoveLuna, which delivers to Cambodia. There appears to be no official sellers of DivaCup, MoonCup or LadyCup in Cambodia, so they should be purchased online.

Costs[edit]

Gynecological Exams[edit]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit]

  • Please visit our local city pages, like the Phnom Penh page, for recommendations.

Costs[edit]

Pregnancy[edit]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit]

  • Marie Stopes Cambodia: Ultrasound $5, plus post natal family planning counseling services, pregnancy tests ($1.25).
  • Please visit our local city pages, like the Phnom Penh page, for recommendations.

Costs[edit]

Abortion[edit]

Important Note: There are two main types of abortions: medical (also known as the "abortion pill") and surgical (also known as "in-clinic"). For medical abortions, you take a pill to induce abortion. For surgical abortions, a procedure is performed to induce abortion. For general information about medical and surgical abortions, click here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit]

In Cambodia, abortion is legally available on request for the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. After 12 weeks, abortion is only permitted if the life of the woman is endangered by the pregnancy, if the the pregnancy causes health issues to the woman, if the pregnancy was the result of rape, or or if the fetus runs the risk of being born with defects. To receive an abortion after 12 weeks, a woman must receive official approval from at least two medical personnel.[11]

Since 1997, Cambodia has had official abortion laws. Before that time, the country's abortion laws were unclear. According to a UN report, "...abortion was widely accepted as a medical procedure, despite the absence of formal guidelines on techniques, indications and consent, and those performing abortions, even when the abortions were unsafe, were not subject to prosecution. Most abortions were reportedly performed in secret by health workers who were untrained for this purpose and who charged high amounts of money for the procedure."[12]

Today, abortion in Cambodia is officially legal. However, many Cambodians remain unclear on the laws. Studies have found up to 80% of Cambodian women falsely believe that abortion is illegal. Forty percent of government providers believe that abortion is prohibited by the Cambodian Ministry of Health (MoH). Many NGO workers also falsely believe that they will go against USAID policy if they refer women to safe abortion services. As a result, some women are referred to clandestine abortion providers.[13]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit]

  • Marie Stopes Cambodia: "We perform safe abortions within the parameters of Cambodian law... We offer two procedures – Medical abortion (up to 9 weeks) usually with Mariprist or Medabon. This is 100,000 riels ($25) and Surgical Abortion (9-12 weeks) 130,000 riels ($32.50)."
  • Please visit our local city pages, like the Phnom Penh page, for recommendations.

Costs[edit]

Advocacy & Counseling[edit]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit]

  • Women's Resource Center Cambodia: "Women’s Resource Center (WRC) provides women and girls in Cambodia with emotional support, referral services and informal education so they can be empowered to make informed decisions about their lives." Call +855 92 373 693. Email: info@wrccambodia.org.

Costs[edit]

List of Additional Resources[edit]

  • Equaldex Cambodia: You can learn about LGBTQ rights and laws in Cambodia on this website.
  • RACHA (Reproductive and Child Health Alliance): "RACHA's vision is to be a leading and dynamic NGO which advances the health of the Cambodian people through sustainable, relevant, and responsive community-based health programs." Address: #160 Street 71, Tonle Bassac, Chamkar Mon, P.O.Box 2471, Phnom Pen, Cambodia. Phone: 023 213 724 Phone: 023 726 257. Fax: 023 213 725. Email: office@racha.org.kh.
  • CamASEAN Youth's Future: "CamASEAN have mission of combating discrimination against minority diversity people include lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ), young girls live with HIV/AIDs, sex workers, drug user, people with disability, widowed/single parent, elderly people, indigenous and other ethnic people in Cambodia and ASEAN through strengthening capacity of as many activists as possible." Email: info@camasean.org
  • Rainbow Khmer Portal - The Rainbow Krama: "The Cambodia Center for Human Rights' ("CCHR") Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity ("SOGI") project is working to protect and promote human rights for the Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender ("LGBT") community in Cambodia who are often misunderstood, mistreated, threatened and have their human rights violated."
  • Cambodian Center for Human Rights: "We believe that every Cambodian has the right to participate in democracy and to have their fundamental human rights respected. We work towards ensuring that each Cambodian's voice is heard in society."

References[edit]

  1. Trends in Contraceptive Use Worldwide 2015
  2. The Role of Social Support and Parity in Contraceptive Use in Cambodia
  3. The Role of Social Support and Parity in Contraceptive Use in Cambodia
  4. Your guide to women's health in Cambodia
  5. [http://www.cecinfo.org/country-by-country-information/status-availability-database/countries/cambodia/ EC Status and Availability Cambodia]
  6. Princeton EC Website
  7. Princeton EC Website
  8. CAMBODIA - REGULATIONS ON ENTRY, STAY AND RESIDENCE FOR PLHIV
  9. Cambodia: Human Papillomavirus and Related Cancers, Fact Sheet 2016
  10. PrEPWatch Global Map
  11. Abortion in Cambodia
  12. Abortion Policies - UN Report
  13. ASAP Country Profile: Cambodia