Posts Tagged ‘Reproductive Health’

More Data Regarding Teen Pregnancy Rates

February 1, 2010

This editorial in the New York Times discusses a recent study done by the Guttmacher Institute about how teenage pregnancy and abortion rates have increased recently (2005-2006) and suggests a possible correlation with the Bush administration’s abstinence-only education policies. The New York Times piece is pretty short, so give it a look-see.

The association is really only a suggestion, but it’s still exciting to have emerging information about reproductive health. Here’s the full report if you’re interested.

UK Pilot Program Provides Over-The-Counter Oral Contraception

December 15, 2009

A pilot program to give teenage girls OTC birth control pills is being launched in London.

Pharmacists have been trained to do general checks and provide oral contraception in two inner-city London areas, both with high teenage pregnancy rates (one, Southwark, has twice the national average). I am sooooo interested to see the findings.

Apparently the UK government’s goal to reduce teenage pregnancy by 50% by 2010 is not even close to being reached. Thus the program. Of course opponents go with the old stand-by: promiscuity.

What are your thoughts? Possible increases in promiscuity? OTC birth control for teens a good idea? I’m personally pretty jazzed, but we’ll see how things proceed.

And Another Thing

December 1, 2009

Today is World AIDS Day. I hope everyone’s wearing red and considering the impact AIDS has had on the world. And figuring out ways to stop it.

So Comprehensive Sex Ed Works

November 12, 2009

Something the public healthists have been saying for awhile now…

National Partnership for Women and Families has it here. The CDC issued a report that gave the findings of a panel of 15 experts who reviewed the results of a meta-analysis of studies on comprehensive sex education. Here’s what Women’s Health Policy Report said:

Sex education programs that advise students to delay sexual activity while also offering instruction on ways to avoid unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections effectively reduce risky sexual behavior, increase condom use and decrease spread of STIs, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-commissioned report released on Friday, the Washington Post reports. The report said there is insufficient evidence to determine whether programs that focus on abstinence until marriage reduce the chance adolescents will engage in risky sexual behavior, become pregnant or contract an STI.

Of course the abstinence-only supporters (becoming fewer and fewer by the day) tried to discredit it, but I think the proof is in the pudding.

I can’t find the original CDC report, does anyone have it?

I think it’s interesting as well that they couldn’t find sufficient evidence to make a determination on the effects of abstinence-only programs. I’ve read studies that say it may contribute to higher teen pregnancy rates. I don’t have links for that either, though, so don’t quote me in your final papers. 

Anyhoo, good news! This report comes on the heels of President Obama’s attempts to redirect federal funds to only cover sex ed programs that have scientific evidence to support their validity. Not internal/external, ya nerds, like their truthfulness. I like to think things like this mean some of us might actually find jobs when we’re done with school in June.

Keep in mind as well that comprehensive sex ed includes curriculum to prevent sexual initiation by promoting abstinence but also educating students about STI and pregnancy prevention.

Birth Control Through History

November 2, 2009

You have to check out this slideshow from Newsweek.com. It’s a look back at the history of birth control. Just a few minutes long and very informational. Plus it’s funny! They definitely use the word “womanizer”. Genius.

HPV Vaccine Approved for Boys, Let the Games Begin!

October 29, 2009

Gardasil, the Merck vaccine approved for girls a few years ago, has been approved for boys. The discussion surrounding the approval has been truly fascinating. This Slate post on the topic is amazing.

 The post is definitely not objective, but I love the way William Saletan talks about it. Has anyone read the BMJ article?

House Still Arguing Over Abortion

October 29, 2009

The House of Representatives is on the cusp of unveiling their health reform bill and they’re still going back and forth about abortion. There are a million reasons why leaving “no federal funds for abortion” language out of the bill is important. For one, it’s assumed in the legislation because of the laws we already have. It’s redundant.

I’ll let Rep. Yarmuth (D-KY) make the second point for me:

…consensus that we are not going to use taxpayer funds. The question is how you define it. … what [Stupak] wants to do is go a lot further than the status quo … And a woman under his amendment, as I understand it, shopping in the exchange for insurance would not be able to buy coverage for insurance, even with her own money. She would have to actually buy a separate rider, which means she would have to plan for an unplanned event, which I think is illogical.

But the part that makes me the most crazy: there are several groups (Catholic Bishops, moderate Democrats) who acknowledge that health is a human right, who support health reform legislation, but who will withdraw their support if the federal funding wording isn’t included. So basically they’ll pull legislation for a basic human right because their stance is implied instead of explicitly stated.

Make sure to check out the rest of the quotes from Stupak, he makes some great points. And if you want to hear more about this, I wrote a paper on the topic. Since everyone who reads this blog knows me personally, just shoot me an email. *Hehe, internet self-deprecation.*

A Step Back in Women’s Rights?

October 4, 2009

From Christina D:

I was quite alarmed to learn that some anti-choice lawmakers are trying to use health care reform to restrict access to abortion and family planning.  Check out this article in the Boston Globe.

This goes beyond restrictions in public plans and may influence women with private health-insurance.  I urge you to speak out against this by contacting members of congress.  NARAL Pro-Choice America has crafted a letter.