MANILA, PHILIPPINES — While teenage pregnancies were lower in 2022, the Commission on Population (POPCOM) announced that pregnancy among adolescents 10 to 14 was still high.
POPCOM Undersecretary Lisa Grace Bersales reported that there was a decrease in the adolescent birth rate of ages 15 to 19 during the pandemic. However, the statistics for much younger teenage girls have become concerning.
“The statistics from the Civil Registry of Statistics system of the Philippines Statistics Authority that in 2020, there were 2,113 births from this age group, 10-14,” Bersales said.
“From the field health service information system of the DOH (Department of Health), the births for this age group were 2,534, down to 2,299 in 2021. So, the statistics varied depending on the source of data, but they are all worrying,” she added. “I may emphasize 10 to 14 is something that we need to look into.”
Back in 2020, POPCOM released a report revealing that 40 to 50 children aged 10 to 14 gave birth every week, which totals at least 2,080 births in a year.
Lawmakers begin discussion of teenage prenancy measures
In light of this concerning news, lawmakers have begun initial deliberations on February 2 to propose a measure that will create a comprehensive policy to educate against and prevent adolescent pregnancy.
Six measures have been discussed by the House Committee on Youth and Sports Development to address the prevailing teenage pregnancy issue in the country.
POPCOM Executive Director Lolito Tacardon said the population agency would be able to sustain the reduction of teenage pregnancy with the help of government agencies such as the Department of Education (DEPED) and the Department of Health (DOH).
“That is our expectation, that is our hope that government agencies would continuously work together on the prevention and the reduction of adolescent pregnancy,” said Tacardon. – WhatALife!