Teenage abortions rate on rise

THE number of teenagers in North Somerset having an abortion is increasing because girls want to do better for themselves, according to a health official

THE number of teenagers in North Somerset having an abortion is increasing because girls want to do better for themselves, according to a health official.Information released this week shows that over the past seven years the number of teenagers getting pregnant has gone down by more than 20 per cent across the district. But it also shows more than half of pregnancies result in a termination.Teenage pregnancy and sexual health programme manager for North Somerset Primary Care Trust (PCT), Ginette Corr, said: "Generally across North Somerset, being a teenage mum is becoming less acceptable. Girls have aspirations and want to do better. Therefore perhaps they are choosing a termination."Reducing teenage pregnancy requires significant changes in attitudes and behaviour. These are sometimes deep rooted and spanning several generations so it takes time to achieve these goals."For this reason, we are keen to reach those areas which still have a comparatively high rate of teenage conceptions and a high proportion of teenagers at risk".North Somerset PCT is now taking part in the No Worries! campaign to let young people know where they can get advice on sexual health and emergency contraception.A new No Worries! clinic opened above the Boulevard Chemist in Waterloo Street in October and posters have been put in GP surgeries and other places across town to show youngsters where to go for help.According to figures released by the Audit Commission this week:* Number of under 18sgetting pregnant: 1998 - 112. 2002 - 109.2005 (provisional) - 103.* Leading to abortion: 1998 - 47.3 per cent.2002 - 44 per cent.2005 (provisional) - 51.5 per cent.

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