Teen Pregnancy Rates Drop By 16%

posted by YMGT

Teenage pregnancy rates in Bristol have fallen for the second consecutive year, reducing by 16% from the previous year. Nationally the rate fell by 7.3%.

Projects, including early intervention work with vulnerable young people and training for professionals have helped reduce teenage conceptions in the city but these are just some of the many projects that are helping towards the decline.

Anne Colquhoun, Teenage Pregnancy Strategy Lead, NHS Bristol said: “We know from research that there is no easy answer to reducing teenage pregnancy rates but by ensuring that sexual health advice and support services are easily accessible, improving sex education and targeting those most at risk are incredibly important.  These are the things that we’ve worked hard to improve over the last few years. It takes time to see results but we’re happy to see the trend decline once more.”

Bristol City Council’s Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, Councillor Clare Campion-Smith, said: “These are welcome results, but just part of the picture that makes up the complex work being done inBristolto improve young people’s sexual health and relationships. Having an unplanned pregnancy can be a result of many factors, such as pressure to have sex before someone is ready. It is therefore not as simple as educating young people about contraception, but arming them with the skills to make positive choices. This is absolutely core to the work inBristol.”

Teenage pregnancy prevention is a cross-city priority for NHS Bristol, Bristol City Council and the third sector who have been working in partnership to affect change.   Last year the school drop-ins in secondary schools, managed by Brook, won national acclaim as an example of innovative practice. The programme of continuing professional development to support teachers in delivering sex and relationships education is also one of the biggest in the country.  The work is part of wider priorities around improving young people’s relationships and sexual health and so other work has focussed on increasing young people’s resilience to pressure, raising aspirations, teaching young people about healthy and unhealthy relationships and giving them the confidence to access health services.

 

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