25% of year 10 students are having sex

In Victoria at the moment there is a debate about whether or not schools should make condoms readily available to high school children, given that recent research showed 25% of year 10 students said they were already having sex and 50% of year 12 students said they have had sex, of those only 60% of  the boys and 46% of the girls said they always used condoms.

Chief executive of Family Planning Victoria, Lynne Jordan said, “We do know that there are some very young people having sex. And having condoms more readily available – there’s no evidence to suggest that actually increases sexual activity.”

She added “if a younger person who is sexually active gets the condom, I would think that’s a better proposition than then actually having unprotected sex.”

Jordan said it may take some time to implement this scheme as there still needed to be talks between schools, Family Planning Victoria and the federal government.

Brian Burgess, president of the Victorian Association of State Secondary Principals said the issue is now critical with the increasing numbers of unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases.

Mr Burgess concluded that it is not just about young people’s sexuality or when they first start having sex – it is actually a health issue.

Teenage health issues has also been the subject of many articles in medical journals including an article “Teenage Pregnancy: Tell it like it is” published in the Medical Journal of Australia, which said “as adolescents commonly delay seeking prescription contraception [until] after initiating sexual activity, it is perhaps not surprising that half of adolescent pregnancies occur in the first 6 months of sexual activity.”

The article also pointed out that sexually active teenagers ran a greater risk of getting sexually transmitted infections such as Chlamydia trachomatis (CT) and gonorrhoea because they did not always use protection during sexual contact.

Writer Helen Splarn. Editor Dr Ramesh Manocha

Source: Family Planning Victoria.   International Business News – Health