Friday, January 8, 2010

Consultation on teenage access to contraception

We reported on Dec 23rd that the Irish Law Reform Commission is proposing that Ireland should copy Britain and allow teenagers, including those under the age of consent, legally to receive contraception. The commission's consultation report on the matter proposes the legal situation in Britain as a model for Ireland. The report also relies upon false claims by the pro-abortion World Health Organisation and the pro-abortion Irish Family Planning Association that access to contraception is good for teenagers's sexual health.

We now report on an article by David Paton PhD, chair of industrial economics, Nottingham University Business School. The article is titled "Exploring the evidence on strategies to reduce teenage pregnancy rates" and was published in the Nursing Times.

This article outlines the goals of the Teenage Pregnancy Strategy, its progress in reducing conceptions over the past 10 years and the scientific evidence on the effectiveness of these policies.

The article reveals that;

*Some sexual health interventions can have unexpected and unwanted effects on teenage sexual behaviour.

*Providing emergency contraception in school and other settings is unlikely to contribute to lower teenage pregnancy rates.

*Insisting on parental consent before providing sexual health services to minors may have beneficial impacts on teenage sexual health.

*Practitioners should consider the possible impact of interventions on STIs as well as teenage pregnancy

This research is vitally important in ensuring that we in Ireland do not make the same unfortunate mistakes that have been made in the UK where despite more than £200m being spent on the Teenage Pregnancy Strategy,the report tells us there has been little discernible impact on conception rates, at least at a national level. Although disappointing, these results should not be surprising.