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‘Too many’ pregnant teens

rhondathompson, [email protected]

‘Too many’ pregnant teens

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ALREADY FOR THE year, the Edgar Cochrane Polyclinic has seen approximately eight cases of teenage pregnancy.
A figure which Senior Health Sister Cicely Destang has described as “too high and the year has just started”.
Speaking to the DAILY NATION during an Adolescent Expo the polyclinic organized that targeted Parkinson Memorial, Ann Hill and Polytechnic students, Destang said this number of teenagers ranging between the ages of 16 and 18 were “a lot more than last year”.
“We ask them have you used contraceptives or do you know anything about contraceptive and they say: ‘What?’ They are fully aware of STD’s and STI’s but when it comes to contraceptives to prevent that pregnancy a lot of them don’t know. And the fact that they are pregnant means that they are exposed to STI’s/STD’s.”
She added: “We never encourage abortion.
We always bring the parents in with them and we say to the parents there are alternatives such as adoption, there are social services where they can get financial help. And we try to encourage the young people to stay in school despite the pregnancy.”
The health sister indicated that she believed the ongoing trend of teenage pregnancy stemmed from the fact that young people were being exposed to a lot more sexuality, adding that they needed positive guidance.
As a result of these eight cases, the polyclinic staged the expo to educate the students about issues such as sexuality, crime and violence in society and nutrition, amongst others.
“And we are going to take young people who are pregnant and have a session with them. We are going to bring in a psychologist as well. We want to find out what is causing the pregnancies.
There is no point in us sitting and assuming, we want to find out from them why the early pregnancy. Find out about whatever challenges we are having,” said Destang. (AH)