Indian J Sex Transm Dis Indian J Sex Transm Dis
Official Publication of the Indian Association for the Study of Sexually Transmitted Diseases
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Felt needs and expectations of adolescents regarding sexual and reproductive health from schools and health systems: A descriptive study

1 State Health Systems Resource Centre, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India
2 Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, JIPMER, Puducherry, India

Correspondence Address:
Sreenidhi Sreekumar,
State Health Systems Resource Centre, Near KMSCL Building, Thycaud P.O, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijstd.IJSTD_20_17

Background: Much focus has been given to find ways to overcome the barriers that exist among adolescents in the utilization of sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services. This study attempts to explore the felt needs of adolescents regarding SRH education at schools and their expectations regarding SRH care from a health system. Methodology: A cross-sectional study was conducted among 400 1st-year arts and science college students in Puducherry, India. Data collection and analysis were done from January 2015 to February 2015. Data were captured using a self-administered pretested questionnaire. Results: Seventy percent participants felt that it is necessary to have educational contents on SRH at schools and 33.5% felt that the current SRH education is inadequate. About 28.9% felt uncomfortable to discuss their doubts on SRH with teachers. Almost 90% preferred schools as the source of SRH education in the community. Nearly 42% of adolescents thought that they would consult a doctor in the instance of a sexual illness. Thirty-nine percent preferred specialized SRH clinics. More than half expected privacy and confidentiality and the presence of a same sex doctor as the most important feature of an SRH-care facility. The least preferred SRH-care facility was government clinics (18%), and the major reasons for not preferring government facilities were lack of quality (43%) and overcrowding (43%). Conclusion: It is important to conceive schools as the foundation for providing SRH education among the adolescents supported by a friendly and responsive health system.

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