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Reprod Health Matters. 2001 May;9(17):170-83.

Sexually transmitted infections among adolescents: the need for adequate health services.

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The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that two-thirds of all STIs worldwide occur in young people--teenagers and those in their early twenties (WHO 1993, WHO 1995). The provision of STI services to these age groups should therefore be high on the agenda of STI programme planners and adolescent/young people's health programmers alike. However, attempts to promote the sexual health of young people have so far tended to focus on prevention, education and counselling, while the provision of services to those who have already faced the consequences of unprotected sexual activity, including pregnancy and STI, or sexual violence, has lagged behind. In 1999-2000 a review was commissioned by GTZ of the characteristics of adolescent sexuality, evidence of STI risk in adolescents, the profile of adolescents in need of STI care, types and evidence of success of different STI service delivery models for adolescents and the advantages and disadvantages of each of these, and to what extent a youth-specific approach to STI services or an STI-specific approach to adolescent health service delivery, is warranted. This review will be published jointly by GTZ and WHO with the title Sexually Transmitted Infections among Adolescents: The Need for Adequate Health Services. This is a shortened form of the Summary and Conclusions of this book.

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