Investment Needed In Sexual & Reproductive Health

Published: Fri 21 Nov 2003 03:17 PM
21 November, 2003
Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) statistics confirm a high level of unprotected sex in New Zealand. The statistics tell a grim story FPA Executive Director, Dr Gill Greer, has told the association’s annual Forum in Wellington today.
An aspect of the figures released this week by the Institute of Environmental Science and Research, is a huge variation in the number of women diagnosed with Chlamydia compared to men.
Dr Greer said all the male statistics in all the areas where the data is collected – Auckland, Waikato and the Bay of Plenty are much smaller than the female figures and this highlights the likelihood of significant undiagnosed chlamydia. (Refer STI Surveillance).
“It’s no wonder New Zealand is nicknamed the chlamydia capital of the world.
“We are in a crisis – how much worse does it have to get before something is done.”
Dr Greer said it was no coincidence that the rates are high in areas of social and economic deprivation.
“Social inequalities result in health inequalities which are then reflected in the sexual and reproductive health of New Zealanders.”
Dr Greer said the time had come to take action and for the Government to demonstrate real political will by investing across all sectors in programmes and policies that reduce the disparities.
“I’m talking about education, housing, employment and making sure our young people have hope of a meaningful life.
“We must learn from countries like the Netherlands and the United Kingdom that have both successfully reduced teenage pregnancy and STI statistics. Those countries commit significant funding across all ministries and agencies and the United Kingdom is now seeing a 10 percent decrease in teenage pregnancy in the under 18 year age group.”
Dr Greer said it was important that NGO’s like FPA maintain the right to advocate for public health policy that will improve the health of New Zealanders. Where NGO’s receive Government funding it is vital there be transparency concerning its use, but the freedom to raise awareness of issues must be protected.
“I have raised many of these issues before and will continue to call for increased investment in sexual and reproductive health,” Dr Greer said.

Next in Lifestyle

APRA Silver Scroll Awards – 2018 Top 20
Armistice Day centenary commemorations
By: New Zealand Government
The Glory That Was Greece & The Grandeur That Was Rome (II)
By: Howard Davis
The Glory That Was Greece, And The Grandeur That Was Rome
By: Howard Davis
If the whale’s gone, the fireworks are on
By: Wellington City Council
Photos: Right Whale, Or Weather, May Halt Saturday Fireworks
By: The Wellington App
Statement about the whale in Wellington Harbour and Matariki
By: Department of Conservation
Give the whale space
By: Department of Conservation
Plea to Wellington whale watchers - be safe out there
By: New Zealand Police
Wellington’s whale may be a good sign, says NIWA
Blazing Sky Show to light up Matariki
By: Wellington City Council
Janet the 17m blue whale makes oil conference debut
By: Greenpeace
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILEWe're in BETA! Send Feedback © Scoop Media