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Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Teen pregnancy, a social emergency

The national government declared teen pregnancy as a national social emergency in 2019 due to its high number of incidents, which remains a pressing issue until the present.
Teenage pregnancy has “its implication on the growth, development and well-being of both a pregnant teenage mother and her child during the pregnancy and after childbirth,” said Vanessa G. Retuerma, director of Strategy Management, Impact and Learning Department of World Vision
Study presentor, Dr. Kim de la Luna, said that addressing the teen pregnancy problem requires a multi-sectoral approach that involves the government, civil society organizations, and the private sector; focus on increasing access to family planning services, providing comprehensive education on reproductive health, improving maternal and child care services, and addressing cultural barriers and stigmas.
Southern Leyte and Samar provinces have been identified by the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), United Nations, and World Health Organizations for funding to control the escalating teen pregnancies in these areas.
Early this year, officials from the above-cited organizations, the Department of Health (DOH), and local government units jointly launched the program to reduce adolescent pregnancy in Southern Leyte and Samar in the Philippines.
As reported earlier, the Southern Leyte’s 2019 provincial teenage pregnancy monitoring data showed that there were a total of 383 pregnant women with age ranging from 10 to 19 years old. The report stated that the highest incident came from Sogod with 68 pregnancies; followed by Maasin with 62; Saint Bernard and San Juan with 42 each; Hinunangan with 41; Malitbog, 26; San Francisco, 21; Hinundayan, 19; Libagon, 15; Liloan, 13; Pintuyan, 10; San Ricardo, 7; Limasawa and Silago with 4 each; Padre Burgos, Tomas Oppus, Bontoc, and Anahawan had 0; and Macrohon had no data indicated.
Currently being implemented is the Key Assistance for Developing Adolescents (KADA) network strategy of the Department of Health to six provinces in Eastern Visayas. This focuses on establishing adolescent-friendly health facilities, hospitals, and learning institutions.
The World Vision and KOICA are now implementing Phase 1 of the KOICA Maternal Newborn and Child Health (MNCH) Project in the Eastern Visayas Region, covering the provinces of Leyte, Eastern Samar, Samar, and Northern Samar. Next places targeted are “Southern Leyte, Samar, Leyte, Eastern Samar, Northern Samar, Tacloban City and Ormoc City,” said Hermart C. Severino of the Department of Health-Region 8 Center for Health Development. (GMR)

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