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Teen pregnancy in the spotlight as numbers spike<span><p>Last year between July 2022 and June 2023, the number of teenagers aged between 12 and 17 who visited a clinic for their first antenatal visit were 632, compared to 355 the previous corresponding year.</p><p>The increase was seen across all City Health districts.<br></p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img src="" class="responsive" alt="" style="width:949px;" /> </figure></span><span><p style="text-align:justify;">At the same time, the number of clinic visits for contraceptive services decreased.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The number of female condoms distributed during the 2022/2023 financial year dropped to 451 271 compared to 671 488 the previous year, while male condom use dropped from 29 086 050 to 19 259 681. </p><p>This represents a decrease of more than 30% in the use of condoms.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Last week a pregnancy awareness event was held in Wallacedene to observe Pregnancy Education Week and Condom and STI Awareness Week - both in February.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">'While the aim of the week is to reduce pregnancy-related complications and encourage women to visit a clinic, we cannot turn a blind eye to the fact that our girls are sexually active and there is an increase in teen pregnancies.<br></p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img src="" class="responsive" alt="" style="width:949px;" /> </figure>​​</span><span><p>'Besides the detrimental impact on growth, productivity, communities and families, a teen pregnancy disrupts the young mother's education and puts her future at risk. Our girls have a bright future, and I want to encourage them to do everything they can to make healthy and informed choices,' said the City's Mayoral Committee Member for Community Service and Health, Councillor Patricia van der Ross.</p><p>Condom and STI Awareness Week is an important initiative that aims to raise awareness about sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and promote safe sexual practices. </p><p>'It's an essential reminder of the importance of practising safe sex through proper and consistent condom use. Not only do they prevent pregnancy, but condoms play a role in preventing the transmission of STIs and encourage open conversations around sexual health,' said Councillor Ronel Viljoen, Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee for Community Services and Health.</p><p>'Condom and STI Awareness Week also seeks to address common misconceptions surrounding condom use and encourage open conversations about sexual health. At events, staff encourage the proper use of male and female condoms, debunk myths related to their effectiveness, and engage in discussions on how to prioritise safe sex practices. By creating a space for dialogue and education around condom use, we hope to empower individuals to make informed decisions regarding their sexual well-being,' added Councillor Van Der Ross.<br></p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img src="" class="responsive" alt="" style="width:949px;" /> </figure>​​</span><p>Further health data shows the number of people who started on Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) more than doubled from 3 266 to 6 796.</p><p>PrEP and Post Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) are HIV prevention strategies. </p><p>Since implementing PrEP at City Health facilities two years ago, more than 12 000 people have started treatment at the 67 facilities offering this service. </p><p>As PrEP is not a life-long treatment, clients can safely discontinue PrEP when their HIV risk is no longer high, or if it is their preference. <br></p><p><strong>End</strong><br></p>2024-02-18T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#3a31f012-d65b-49b4-b54d-288fbcb9090e;L0|#03a31f012-d65b-49b4-b54d-288fbcb9090e|Pregnancy Week;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#0f4c8d10-0390-4e6a-8b31-f8fc334ac91f;L0|#00f4c8d10-0390-4e6a-8b31-f8fc334ac91f|clinic10

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