Girls Challenge Access to Contraception at Johannesburg Clinics

A clinic in the heart of Johannesburg, South Africa, does not welcome teenage girls, a small study by Afrika Tikkun found. After sending 13 young participants from a non-governmental organization to two clinics in the Hillbrow district to seek information on contraception during school holidays last spring, the organization said some staff were “rude” to the locals. I found that it was “useless”. Teens visiting the center.

When the girls went to the Hillbrow Community Health Center, they found long lines, lack of privacy, judgmental comments, and the bad attitude they were offered. They wrote down their experience in the clinic as part of an investigation that included suggestions for improvement. Teen Voice was given access to a copy of the letter that was then sent to the clinic.

Overall, the experience at the Hillbrow Community Health Center was negative. The teens properly sent to a nearby adolescent clinic were “helpful” and “welcome”. Both clinics are located in one of South Africa’s most densely populated areas. Only four of the 13 young women who went to the clinic for this study succeeded in getting more information about contraceptives.

“I was given information about contraceptives, but security [guard] It was very rude, “written 18-year-old Prudence Dube. He laughed at her when she told him why she was there. “But other than that, I got the information I needed.”

For the rest, their visit to the clinic was unproductive.

16-year-old Jessica Ndlov writes: I couldn’t get the information I needed. “She” Ndlovu said she was four years older than the legal age for access to contraceptives in South Africa, but her nurse thought she looked young and even refused to answer her question. The same thing happened to two young women between the ages of 14 and 18. They turned their backs like Ndlovu because they seemed “too young” to ask about contraceptives in the eyes of clinic staff.

“The receptionist was very rude to me,” writes 18-year-old Faith Sedege. “The service was poor and I left without collecting the necessary information, so I felt it was meaningless.”

While contraceptive information and counseling are essential services in these clinics, research has shown that there is a disconnect between nurse care and receptionist, cleaner, and security guard care. All the girls who participated in the survey were part of Afrika Tikkun’s Young Urban Womens program, an organizational leadership and reproductive rights program.

This study was born when a group of young women noticed a high rate of teenage pregnancy in the community. Nationally, the number of school-aged girls who become pregnant increased by 46 percent between 2011 and 2013. Statistics South Africa. In 2013, 99,000 girls became pregnant. “The daily rate of one year is about 271 people,” the study found. The United Nations Population Fund Pregnancy rates for teens are rising in South Africa, with 2% of pregnant girls reporting that they have not graduated from school. A survey of 54 teenage women by women in young cities found that the main causes of teenage pregnancy were unprotected sex and lack of knowledge and information about contraception.

In a follow-up conversation after a letter from a teenager was mailed to the clinic, Sister Gloria Mendy, a registered nurse supervisor at one of the clinics included in the study, said nurses were negative. He said he didn’t expect any feedback. “It was a surprise because the nurse works and she is insulted by the patient every day,” she said in a short interview.

This meeting with Sister Mendy led to the presentation of the findings to nurses and managers of community health center members. At the meeting, clinic management promised to work with women in young cities to make a difference in order to serve young women properly.

The teenage president of a young urban woman is pleased with the results of a survey that includes discussions on joint activities on 16-day activities between AIDS Day in November and Human Rights Day in December. “We are passionate about making a difference,” Sedege said. “I’m not happy with the status quo. Many girls aren’t educated because they’re pregnant. What our group is doing is small, but we’re empowered women of a new generation. Is giving birth. “

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Written by Fem Society

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