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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Early marriage and sexual and reproductive health vulnerabilities of young women: a synthesis of recent evidence from developing countries

    Purpose of review: To review current evidence on the links between early marriage and health-related outcomes for young women and their children. Recent findings: Every third young woman in the developing countries excluding China continues to marry as a child, that is before age 18. Recent studies reiterate the adverse health consequences of early marriage among young women and their children even after a host of confounding factors are controlled. …

  2. Teenage marriage, fertility, and well-being: panel evidence from India

    This paper uses a unique dataset from Andhra Pradesh, tracking a cohort of children who were born in 1994–95 from the ages of 8 to 19 years, to ask three key questions about teenage marriage and fertility in India. First, what predicts getting married during the teen years? Second, what predicts having given birth by 19? …

  3. Factors shaping trajectories to child and early marriage: evidence from Young Lives in India

    The 2011 Census in India reported that nearly 17 million children between the ages of 10 and 19 –6% of the age group – are married, with girls constituting the majority (76 per cent), although there has been a significant relative reduction in the marriage of girls under 14. The aim of this paper is to better understand the individual, household and community factors that explain the different pathways to marriage among Young Lives children, drawing upon both descriptive statistics from the household survey as well as in-depth qualitative research with the study children.

  4. How reliable are reports of early adolescent reproductive and sexual health events in demographic and health surveys?

    CONTEXT: Age at sexual debut, age at first marriage or first union and age at first birth are among the most widely used indicators of health and well-being for female adolescents. However, the accuracy of estimates for these indicators, particularly for younger adolescents, is poorly understood. METHODS: For each of nine countries in Africa and Latin America, Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) data from two surveys conducted five years apart were used to examine women’s reports of age at sexual debut, marriage or first union, and first birth. …

  5. Adolescent women’s need for and use of sexual and reproductive health services in developing countries

    With this report, the authors aim to provide an up-to-date and comprehensive overview of the use of sexual and reproductive health services by adolescent women aged 15–19 in the developing world. Using reliable nationally representative surveys in 70 countries, the report presents 30 indicators that cover a wide range of topics related to the sexual and reproductive health of adolescent women. Chapter 2 outlines the methods and data sources used for this report. Chapter 3 focuses on marriage, sexual activity and contraception. …

  6. Sexual and reproductive health and rights for the next decades: What's been achieved? What lies ahead?

    This Global Public Health Special Issue ‘SRHR for the next decades: What's been achieved? What lies ahead?’ assesses progress 20 years after the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD), which established the sexual and reproductive health and rights framework for population and health policy (United Nations [UN], 1995). …

  7. Sexual and reproductive health rights and information and communications technologies: A policy review and case study from South Africa

    This report examines the linkages between policies on, and implementation of, sexual and reproductive health rights (SRHR) and ICT in rural and peri-urban spaces in South Africa. South Africa is renowned for its legal provisions addressing SRHR yet also experiences barriers to adolescent sexual health. SRHR programming is politically complex and often ambivalent; as a result less contentious aspects which emphasise maternal health get prioritised. …

  8. Unintended pregnancy and abortion in Uganda

    Unintended pregnancy is common in Uganda, leading to high levels of unplanned births, unsafe abortions, and maternal injury and death. Because most pregnancies that end in abortion are unwanted, nearly all ill health and mortality resulting from unsafe abortion is preventable. This report summarizes evidence on the context and consequences of unintended pregnancy and unsafe abortion in Uganda, points out gaps in knowledge, and highlights steps that can be taken to reduce levels of unintended pregnancy and unsafe abortion, and, in turn, the high level of maternal mortality.

  9. Youth and unsafe abortion: a global snapshot

    Worldwide, approximately 16 million women and girls ages 15 to 19 give birth each year, accounting for approximately 11 percent of all births worldwide. For these young women, complications from pregnancy and childbirth are the leading cause of death, and unsafe abortion is a major contributor to this mortality. This brief provides an overview of unsafe abortion among young women. …

  10. Human capital consequences of teenage childbearing in South Africa

    Women in South Africa have had fewer children on average since the 1970s, but the rate of teenage childbearing in South Africa has remained the same. Large numbers of young mothers are a cause for social concern in South Africa and other countries because of the adverse impact of teenage childbearing on the education and health of teen mothers and their children. …

  11. Using participatory research and action to address the HIV-related vulnerabilities of adolescent girls in Tanzania

    Globally, girls and young women are more likely to be HIV positive than their male peers, due in large part to an array of gender inequalities that negatively impact their mental and physical well being. Protecting girls from this multi-dimensional risk requires first understanding how the girls experience vulnerability in their daily lives and developing solutions that are actionable within the community context. …

  12. The Right to Contraceptive Information and Services for Women and Adolescents

    This briefing paper examines the rights of women and adolescents to access contraceptive information and services. It provides practical guidance for activists, scholars, UN agencies, nongovernmental organizations, governments, and other actors working in the area of sexual and reproductive health to integrate human rights into programs and policies. …

  13. The HIV/AIDS challenge in Mozambique: who is most at risk and how we can get more information to them

    HIV/AIDS is a major threat to the well-being of Mozambicans, not to mention to the country's economic and social development. Mozambique has one of the highest prevalence rates of HIV in the world. Close to 13 percent of the adult population between 15 and 49 is infected. Women, youth and young adults are most at risk. Analysis from AudienceScapes suggests that radio has the most potential for reaching women, youth and young adults. …

  14. A measure of commitment: women's sexual and reproductive health risk index for Sub-Saharan Africa

    In 2008 the number of African women who died from pregnancy and child birth was much higher than the number of casualties from all the major conflicts in Africa combined. Maternal mortality continues to be the major cause of death among women of reproductive age (15-49) in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). This report looks at the performance of sub Saharan African countries in meeting reproductive health targets in 47 countries and ranks them using a set of ten indicators in order of the highest to lowest risk. …

  15. Are adolescents and young adults more likely than older women to choose commercial and private sector providers of modern contraception?

    This study tests the hypothesis suggested by many smaller studies that young people prefer to use private providers to access contraceptive methods. It examines the patterns in young women's levels of sexual activity, use of modern methods of contraception, and sources of modern contraception by age group and union status, using Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) data. In addition, while controlling for other important explanatory variables, the study seeks to answer the question of whether young women are more likely to choose private sector providers than older women. …

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