Despite repeated recommendations on the need to provide reproductive health support services to adolescents, few boys are receiving the information they need to protect themselves from HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases, reports a new study.
Less than a quarter of young people from 15 to 19 years had received advice on sexually transmitted diseases or HIV from a health organization in the previous year, according to a national survey among 1.121 youth in the year of 2002, indicating that the situation has not improved significantly since 1995, when a previous study found similar proportions.
Young people who had three or more female partners or engaged in oral or anal sex with male partners were more likely to have received counseling. Once again, the proportion was similar to that of the 1995 study, according to new research.
Fewer than 20% of youths studied had contraception with a health organization in 2002, according to the study, while nearly two-thirds of women of the same age group had received this type of service, according to the study.
"The medical system has actually been designed to meet the needs of women and maternal health in a way that does not serve the needs of young men," said Dr. Arik Marcell, assistant professor at Johns University School of Medicine. Hopkins is lead author of the study, published by the Journal of Adolescent Health.
Translation: Paulo Migliacci ME
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AIDS | SEXUALLY COMMUNICABLE DISEASES