Dubious press release on teenage pregnancy from DCC

According to the figures published by the Office of National Statistics conceptions have fallen by 53.4% in the county since 1998 to 19.4 per 1,000 female population aged 15 to 17, resulting in 270 conceptions in 2013. According to a Derbyshire County Council press release, this is evidence that "the rate of teenage pregnancies in Derbyshire has dropped by more than half since 1998 and is now significantly lower than in England and the East Midlands". We asked DCC if it was the case that nobody under the age of 15 had conceived in Derbyshire during the time period.

DCC said "The ONS (this is their study) focus on the 15 – 17 years data to get a representative ‘rate’ to check local trends. The number of girls younger than this getting pregnant in Derbyshire is so low it has to be pooled over three years to get a reading which is not representative or useful in their studies".

We asked for the total number of pregnancies in Derbyshire in 2013 in girls aged 17 or under, and await a reply

[Picture of actor courtesy of ITV]

Full text of the DCC press release is given below

PR 6131

For Immediate Release

30 April 2015

TEENAGE PREGNANCY IN DERBYSHIRE FALLS TO LOWEST IN 15 YEARS

New figures show the rate of teenage pregnancies in Derbyshire has dropped by more than half since 1998 and is now significantly lower than in England and the East Midlands.

Derbyshire County Council has attributed the decrease to a range of its public health and partnership work including improved sex education in schools and better sexual health promotion services.

According to the figures published by the Office of National Statistics under 18 conceptions have fallen by 53.4% in the county since 1998 to 19.4 per 1,000 female population aged 15 to 17, resulting in 270 conceptions in 2013.

Teenage pregnancy and early motherhood are often associated with a range of issues including poor educational achievement, poor physical and mental health, social isolation and poverty.

Derbyshire County Council’s Director of Public Health Elaine Michel said: “We’re very encouraged to see our work to tackle teenage pregnancies now placing us significantly lower than the national average.

“Unplanned pregnancy creates many issues that young people are not fully equipped to deal with as well as potential health problems and we’re committed to continuing our efforts to reduce rates yet further.

“Although the downward trend is a positive sign we have more to do and our new sexual health service will help young people get the right kind of prevention advice when and where they need it.”

The county council launched its new sexual health service – ‘your sexual health matters’ – on April 1 in partnership with Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust.

It offers a range of sexual health services to support and advise young people including:

• Contraception and specialist sexual health services

• Sexual health promotion delivered by health partners working with young people such as school nurses

• Programmes targeted at building self-esteem among young people including those most at risk of teenage pregnancy   

• Encouraging the distribution and uptake of contraception that does not rely on the user remembering to take or use it such as LARC (Long Acting Reversible Contraception)

Derbyshire schools also play an important part in preventing teenage pregnancy via sex and relationship education sessions in their curriculum.

‘Your sexual health matters’ is supported by a new website providing a one-stop shop for information and advice for residents of all ages www.yoursexualhealthmatters.org.uk 

Residents can also call the information and booking line in confidence on 0800 328 3383.

 

 

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