Unwanted Pregnancies Ranks As Top Issue Among Vientiane Youth

Source: Vientiane Times

The problem of unwanted pregnancies is rated among the top issues at the Vientiane Youth Centre for Health and Development when it comes to evaluating the increased numbers of people who visit the centre to receive advice and treatment, a director confirmed recently

The most common reason for young people to visit is to consult on problems of unwanted pregnancies, with the second most common reason being drug issues and the third being sexually transmitted infections.

From January to August of this year, there has been about 4,800 young people visit to receive advice and treatment at the centre, up from 3,000 last year.

Director of the centre, Ms Dalayvanh Keonakhone told Vientiane Times recently that the centre offers advice on a range of issues and can consult young women with unwanted pregnancies.

This year, unwanted pregnancies are ranked amongst the top issues young people have when they come to use the services of the centre, while the previous year sexually transmitted infections were the number one concern.

“We also organise activities to provide factory workers with advice on health issues related to unwanted pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases, drug issues and other matters of concern,” Ms Dalayvanh said.

The course aims to provide young people with information and advice on the prevention of unwanted pregnancies, reproductive health and other relevant issues, which they will then be able to pass on to their friends and others who come to them for advice.

For several years, the centre has offered advice to students at colleges, universities and other educational institutes in relation to these kinds of problems.

“More than 100 volunteers from the Teachers’ Training College in Savannakhet province were trained, so they can be helpful in spreading the message of the negative impacts of sexually transmitted infections in their provinces,” she added.

The Vientiane Youth Centre for Health and Development is under the direction of the Vientiane Women’s Union and provides suggestions and advice on health issues through its hotline (021) 252 887 or (020) 2223 2484.

The callers are mainly young people seeking advice on health issues. A female caller can get this from medical staff at the centre via extension 1361 and a male caller can get the same through extension 1371.

The hotline service has been run by the centre since 2007 to provide young people with advice on reproductive health, sexually transmitted infections, HIV/AIDS, drug issues and other concerns.