Oct 30, 2013

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Capitol, DOH host adolescent health forum

LUBAO, Pampanga – The provincial government and the Center for Health and Development III hosted an adolescent health forum at the gymnasium of this town participated by teens and young adults from the province’s second district municipalities Tuesday.

The event dubbed, “Iligtas ang Kabataan para sa Kinabukasan ng Bayan,” was participated by some 700 teen-aged girls who are also the provincial government’s scholars, beneficiaries of Special Program for the Employment of Students (SPES) and other youngsters selected by barangay health workers (BHWs) and barangay Public Employment Services Office (PESO) coordinators.

Said activity was personally requested by Governor Lilia “Nanay” G. Pineda from the health department to address the rising number of teenage pregnancies and maternal deaths on said age bracket in the province.

Provincial Social Welfare and Development Officer Elizabeth Baybayan discussed the rights of children, since the participants were still considered children or minors.

Baybayan said the basic rights of the children include survival, developmental, protection and participation.

She explained that the survival right is being addressed by the Capitol’s various health programs for all ages. The provincial government is also responding to the developmental right of the children through scholarship programs and school facilities enhancement programs.

The PSWDO also emphasized that the provincial government ratified the Provincial Children’s Code in 2011; created the Child Abuse Prevention and Intervention Network (CAPIN) and established the Child Protection Units in the 11 district and provincial hospitals to ensure the protection right of the children.

The Capitol has also encouraged the active involvement of the youth in community building and decision making to give emphasis on the participation right of the children as manifested through the conduct of this forum and other related activities.

Dr. Fida Donna Guevarra, obstetrician-gynecologist of Escolastica Romero District Hospital (ERDH), explained the risks involved in teenage pregnancies. She explained that younger moms are more vulnerable to complications since their bodies, particularly their reproductive systems, are not physically ready for childbearing.

Dr. Malou Malamog and Liza Lapira of the health department discussed risk of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI) and Dangers of Substance Abuse, respectively.

Governor Pineda together with Dr. Leonita Gorgolon, regional director of CHD-III, capped the activity with reminders of self-control and goal setting to prevent teenage pregnancies.

“Set your priorities straight. You have to study and work hard to land a stable job or career so that you can ensure a better life for your family and your future kids,” Governor Pineda added.

By Angelique Tuazon