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Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month

By Kent Donahue

May 04, 2018

The month of May is recognized as Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month.  The Florida Department of Health in Orange County wants to make the public aware of the impacts of unintended teen pregnancy, and the need to reduce the rate of teen pregnancy in Orange County. 

Since 1991, the teen pregnancy rates in the nation have declined by 72%. In Orange County, teen birth rates have declined as well. During 2015, which are the latest numbers, Orange County had a total of 831 babies born to women aged 15-19 compared to 884 in 2014. Currently, Florida ranks 24th in the nation with births to 15-19 year olds. Prevention messages are key to creating awareness and continuing to lower the rates. 

“The entire community should work together in this effort of teen pregnancy prevention,” said Dr. Kevin M. Sherin, health officer for the Florida Department of Health in Orange County. “To improve the future of local youth, our department provides abstinence and family planning, as well as HIV and STD education and services.”   

To promote teen pregnancy prevention awareness, the Health Department’s Family Planning & Prenatal program is sponsoring a Teen Pregnancy Prevention Awareness poster contest for middle and high school students in grades 6-12. Also, throughout the month of May, the department will present an abstinence program for middle and high school students, and host focus group sessions to get input from teens. 

Parents can have a positive influence on reducing teen pregnancy. Ways this can be achieved are developing strong relationships with your child, having open and honest communication, and close supervision. Furthermore, parents can encourage their teens to make wise decisions. Tips on how to communicate with your teen and teen pregnancy prevention information can be found at https://powertodecide.org, www.greattowait.com, and www.stayteen.org.