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Thailand joins World Contraception Day 2018 campaign to tackle teen pregnancy

Bangkok, 26 September 2018 – Public and private organizations in Thailand will join an international campaign to raise young people’s awareness of contraception, to be launched on 26 September 2018 when the world marks World Contraception Day. Statistics from World Health Organization (WHO) reveal that 33 million mothers worldwide conceived due to ineffective birth control methods used . Statistics in Thailand show that there were 84,000 births to Thai teens aged 10-19 years in 2017 . Parents are urged to engage in open discussion with their children about sexual health, as the best form of prevention of unplanned pregnancies.

BANGKOK – 26 September 2018: A network of Thai organizations, led by the Ministry of Public Health’s Department of Health and Bayer Thai Co., Ltd., joins an international campaign which culminates in World Contraception Day 2018, promoting awareness of effective birth control methods to reduce the incidence of unplanned and teen pregnancies.

Dr. Kittipong Saejeng, Director of the Bureau of Reproductive Health, Department of Health, Ministry of Public Health stressed that Thailand’s unplanned and teen pregnancies have been on the rise, aided by speedy economic, social and technological changes. Girls as young as 10 years old become pregnant after engaging in premature sex. The consequential impact on their health and society requires all hands on deck to inform the public about more effective birth control methods and the ramifications of unplanned pregnancies.

The survey conducted by Bureau of Reproductive Health, Department of Health survey in 2017 showed that a total of 84,578 girls aged 10-19 years gave birth, which is about 232 such births per day. 10.7% (or 9,092) of these births were second-time births. For the younger-aged girls of 10-14, 2,559 gave birth in 2017, which is approximately 7 such births per day.

“When pregnancy amongst girls aged under 20 are on the rise, many repercussions abound. These girls experience possible physical and mental health issues, and societal problems such as youths dropping out of school, illegal abortions, spread of sexually-transmitted diseases, divorces and poor family planning are exacerbated. It is high time that all parties step in to curb this phenomenon,” he said.

Under the Teen Pregnancy Prevention and Tackling Act BE.2559, which came into force on 29 July 2016, hospitals and clinics are required to provide free consultation on teen pregnancy to teenagers aged 10-20 years old. Teenagers have free access to all available birth control methods, including the 3-year or 5-year contraceptive pill implant and intrauterine contraceptive device.

To supplement these measures, the Department of Health also funds the “Young Love” project, which dispatches medical personnel to various universities and factories to hold knowledge-sharing events.

“Birth control is the responsibility of both men and women. It is not gender-exclusive. Men should wear condoms, while women should use pills or other contraceptive methods. This will not only prevent unplanned pregnancies, but also stop the spread of sexually-transmitted diseases.”

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Manopchai Thamkhantho noted that nearly all teenagers now communicate via online platforms, and this may in turn lead them to wrong information and poor advice about sexual health. Families, schools and healthcare practitioners should be the primary source of consultation. Parents in particular should openly talk about sex with their children, to equip them with the correct knowledge.

“Correcting misconceptions and attitudes on sex and birth control should start at home. Families are the key pillar in this regard, while teachers and friends should be supportive and listen. This will be an effective method of improving teenagers’ sexual health.”

He added that birth control methods vary. Contraceptive pills are a highly effective and convenient birth control method. Whilst they are less effective than sterilization, the pills are also effective improving acne and controlling excessive facial oil caused by a surplus of the male hormone, testosterone. The pill can help improve menstrual pain and the mood swings associated with the menstrual cycle. They can also reduce ovarian and endometrial occurrences of cancer. Some contraceptive pills containing combined hormones can deal with side-effects, without leading to swelling and extra weight caused by fluids retention.

Joining the campaign, actress Napapa (Pat) Tantrakul said that amid the burgeoning number of online applications and social media platforms popular amongst teenagers in the Thailand 4.0 era, more youth need to be equipped with the proper knowledge to reduce premature unplanned pregnancies. She also wanted to reassure pre-teen parents facing problems that they would have the support to pursue further education for a better future.

Mr. Riaz Buksh, General Manager for Pharmaceuticals Business, Bayer Thai Co., Ltd. added that as a pharmaceuticals company with a strong supporter of women’s health, Bayer shares the vision and commitment of Thailand and the global Your Life campaign: a world where every pregnancy is wanted.

Statistics already show that 85 out of 213 million pregnancies worldwide in 2012 were unplanned, and 33 million pregnancies occurred as a result of contraceptive failure . As such, Bayer recognizes that it is imperative to improve awareness of contraception and equip young people worldwide in making informed decisions on their sexual and reproductive health.

“To mark World Contraception Day 2018, Bayer and its 15 international partners supporting the Your Life campaign will launch activities under this long-term initiative, to educate teenagers and the general public on the different contraceptives and the need to prevent unplanned pregnancies. Teens will also be directed to the www.your-life.com website, which contains accurate information on contraception. In Thailand, educational video clips featuring Napapa, Dr. Kittipong and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Manopchai, have been produced to provide correct contraceptive methods and how to prevent unplanned pregnancies to teenagers and the general public and will be publicized on Facebook: Younglove,” said Mr. Buksh.

Mr. Riaz Buksh, General Manager for Pharmaceuticals Business, Bayer Thai Co., Ltd. added that as a pharmaceuticals company with a strong supporter of women’s health, Bayer shares the vision and commitment of Thailand and the global Your Life campaign: a world where every pregnancy is wanted.

For more information about the special video clips, please visit https://th-th.facebook.com/younglovethailand/

Fullvesion : วันคุมกำเนิดโลก https://www.facebook.com/younglovethailand/videos/914216872110709/

Ep.1 คิดให้ดีก่อนทำ https://www.facebook.com/younglovethailand/videos/421127731747728/

Ep.2 เรื่องเซ็กส์ คุยกันได้ https://www.facebook.com/younglovethailand/videos/747355635607236/

Ep.3 เมื่อไม่พร้อม ต้องรับมือ https://www.facebook.com/younglovethailand/videos/463958300762763/

Ep.4 เสริมสร้างทักษะชีวิต https://www.facebook.com/younglovethailand/videos/2129966890554480/

#worldcontraceptionday #วันคุมกำเนิดโลก2018 #รักเป็นปลอดภัย

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