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Teenage pregnancy a serious concern – Lacson

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• GILBERT P. BAYORAN

Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson yesterday described teenage pregnancy in Negros Occidental as a “serious concern,” as he bared his plans to sit down with local chief executives to formulate strategies to drastically reduce its occurrence.

Of the 35,628 pregnant mothers in Negros Occidental last year, the Provincial Health Office reported that a total of 5,721 are teenage pregnancies.

In 2022, PHO recorded 5,576 teenage pregnancies in Negros Occidental, the report added.

In Salvador Benedicto, PHO reports further indicate that 52 percent of all pregnant mothers are teenagers, or those aged 19 years old and below.

Expressing his concern over the high teenage pregnancy in his town, Don Salvador Benedicto Mayor Laurence Marxlen dela Cruz said he will look into the reasons behind it.

Dela Cruz also discovered that majority of those who impregnate teenagers are men in their middle ages or those aged about 40 years old. “We will help these teenagers through trainings, so that even if they are pregnant already they can be productive and have dignity in their lives,” he said.

We will coordinate with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) through its Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (KALAHI-CIDSS), the mayor said.

KALAHI-CIDSSS is a poverty alleviation program of the National Government implemented by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

Lacson said the concern of teenage pregnancy is not only in Don Salvador Benedicto, which is the summer capital of Negros Occidental, due to its cold weather.

“We have to push all local government units to be united and curb this incidence,” he pointed out.

Lacson also said that the Teresita Lopez Jalandoni Provincial Hospital in Silay City, which was recently designated as a family planning training center, will play a major role in curbing the situation of teenage pregnancy.

PHO records further indicated that most teenagers who get pregnant are out of school youth.

The youngest teen pregnancy was 12 years old, disclosed earlier by Provincial Health Officer Dr. Ma. Girlie Pinongan.*

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