UK Govt. awareness program to cut teen pregnancies ineffective

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Washington, July 8 (ANI): A government awareness program in England, devised to cut down teenage pregnancies, drunkenness or cannabis use, had no impact, suggests a study.

Lead authors Meg Wiggins of the Institute of Education, University of London, and Chris Bonell at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, say that the Young People's Development Programme, initiated in 2004, may have even increased pregnancies.

Partakers were either taking part in YPDP (intervention group) or a youth programme away from YPDP funds (comparison group).

The study found young women in the YPDP group reported significantly more pregnancies, as much as 16 per cent, than in the comparison group, which stood at 6 per cent.

Those in the YPDP group also more commonly reported early heterosexual experience and expectation of teenage parenthood, namely 58 per cent versus 33 per cent and 34 per cent versus 24 per cent respectively.

No definite explanation was found for the results.

Douglas Kirby, a senior research scientist based in the US, said that such findings did not apply to all youth development approaches.

The study has been published in the online edition of the British Medical Journal. (ANI)

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