School-based health clinics for adolescent sexual, reproductive and mental health

Access to health care, especially for adolescents, is a high priority policy objective in many countries and particularly for sexual and reproductive health and mental health care [1] . In 2009 young people aged 15-19 years accounted for 41% of all new HIV infections  globally and more than half of other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) [2]. It has also been estimated worldwide that 11% of those who give birth each year are adolescents [3]. The 2nd South African Youth Risk Behaviour survey of learners at school found that 24.4% of  young women report that they have been pregnant [4], whilst data from the 2010 National Antenatal Sentinel HIV and Syphilis prevalence survey [5] has shown that 14% of those aged 15-19 years and 9.4% of those aged 10-14 years who were pregnant were HIV  positive [6]. Mental health problems are estimated to affect 10-25% of adolescents globally, yet their mental health care is often neglected [7, 8]. In South Africa, 21.4% of young people at school have made one or more suicide attempts in the previous 6 months [4].  Clearly sexual and reproductive health services and mental health care services need to be easily accessible to adolescents, and the barriers to access [9] need to be overcome.

View the complete School-based health clinics for adolescent sexual, reproductive and mental health policy brief

Date: 
Friday, June 1, 2012 - 13:18