The beginning of a new year is a good time not only to look ahead, but to remember where you come from. We recently spent some time thinking about our history at PATH. The result is a compilation of some of our most effective or influential work from the past 35 years—our milestones. Over the next few weeks, we’ll be featuring these milestones on the PATH blog. We begin today with an effort that helped give PATH its birth: providing a reliable supply of contraceptives in China.
1979: Modernizing contraceptive factories in China
The health challenge: China, the world’s most populous country, was struggling to provide a consistent supply of high-quality contraceptives to its citizens.
What we did: In 1979, PATH launched its first large-scale international project—helping China modernize its contraceptive factories and increase production of condoms, oral and injectable contraceptives, and intrauterine devices that met international standards. We arranged for Chinese officials to tour US pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers and then worked with Chinese manufacturers to develop new or improved manufacturing facilities.
The result: The factories gave millions of Chinese couples more control over the size of their families and laid the foundation for our work in improving the lives of people around the world.
Editor’s note: This post was updated on February 13, 2012.