New Edubiase (Ash), Feb. 24, GNA - A total of 713 teenage pregnancies including 10 year-old girls were recorded at the New Edubiase Government Hospital within the last two years. Madam Janet Oduro, a Senior Nursing Officer at the hospital who disclosed this said out of the 353 cases recorded in 2003, four of the cases involved 10 and 14 year-old girls, while the remaining 339 cases were within 15 to 19 years bracket. She was speaking at a health symposium organised for about 230 Junior Secondary School pupils drawn from the New Edubiase Junior Secondary schools "A and B" at New Edubiase on Wednesday.
Madam Oduro said the report of the district health service showed that 360 teenage pregnancy cases were recorded in 2004. She said out of the number, 339 were teenagers between 15 to 19 years while the remaining 21 cases were girls between 10 and 14 years. She attributed the causes of the high rate of teenage pregnancies in the area to broken homes, poverty, unemployment and parents inability to monitor the movement of their children.
The Senior Nursing Officer therefore advised the teens to focus on their studies and wait to get matured before thinking of giving birth. Madam Oduro made a passionate appeal to teachers to intensify education on the causes and effects of teenage pregnancies on the individual and the country as a whole. She said due to the high rate of teenage pregnancies in the area, criminal abortion was also on the increase and described the current situation as very disturbing and called for concerted efforts to halt the trend.