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Young women at the heart of east coast contraception campaign

15 September 2011

Young women living in the coastal towns of Scarborough, Whitby and Filey are the subject of a new campaign being launched by the YorSexualHealth partnership to promote the use of long acting reversible contraception (LARC).

The campaign was developed following a detailed piece of research to better understand views towards teenage pregnancy and safe sex, which revealed that many of the coast's young women are unaware of the range of contraception methods available and how easy they are to use.

Katie Needham, Consultant in Public Health for North Yorkshire and York who commissioned the research, said: "Although teenage pregnancy rates have dropped by 20 per cent since the teenage pregnancy strategy was introduced in 2001, rates along the east coast still remain higher than the national average and have actually increased slightly over the last couple of years.

"We wanted to find out the perceptions of local women towards teenage pregnancy to help ensure they are aware of their options and the choices they have regarding contraception."

The research involved a number of interviews with young women in the area and, in some cases, their mothers too.

One of the key findings from the research was that some young women didn't use contraception correctly, ranging from some forgetting to take their contraceptive pill on a daily basis to some not using any at all to.

Carly Walker, Teenage Pregnancy Strategy and Commissioning Manager for North Yorkshire County Council, said: "A good alternative for women who might forget to use contraception or take their pill is long acting reversible contraception, otherwise known as LARC.

"There are four different types of LARC ranging from implants to injections and all are highly effective. The main benefit that women find from using LARC is that once fitted they can just forget about it and not worry about taking it everyday like they would with the pill.

"If they later decide that they would like to start a family, LARC is easily reversed to enable them to conceive."

The campaign, known as 'Questions Answered', involves a range of promotional materials that explain the different methods of contraception available, being distributed via schools, youth venues and pharmacies.

Women who are interested in discussing options of contraception should contact their GP or family planning clinic. Click here for details of clinics in your area.

15 September 2011

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