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Asia Pac J Public Health. 2013 Mar;25(2):134-44. doi: 10.1177/1010539511417423. Epub 2011 Jul 31.

Improving adolescent reproductive health in Asia and the Pacific: do we have the data? A review of DHS and MICS surveys in nine countries.

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Burnet Institute, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.


Data on adolescent reproductive health (ARH) are required to inform evidence-based policies and programs. The reports of national-level household surveys such as the Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) and Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) are important sources of such data in developing countries. The aim of this study was to map data on ARH from DHS and MICS reports from selected countries in the Asia and Pacific regions. The DHS and MICS reports for Bangladesh, Cambodia, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Solomon Islands, Timor-Leste, Vanuatu, and Vietnam were reviewed. Data on 128 indicators, including ARH outcomes, outcomes for babies of adolescent mothers, and adolescents' access to health information and services, were mapped. Available data are limited because of the omission of cohorts such as young adolescents (10-14 years old) and, in many surveys, unmarried women; the omission of important indicators; and failure to report data disaggregated by age. DHS and MICS reports have limited capacity to inform policy and programs to improve ARH. A review of DHS and MICS sampling strategies and reporting templates, and a consideration of alternative data collection strategies, are warranted.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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