For Immediate Release
Contact: Scott Oxarart
775.328.2414 or 775.276.1021
Reno, Nev. May 28, 2020. The Washoe County Health District (WCHD) reminds residents that May is Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month and that continued education and programs are available to reduce teen pregnancy and promote women’s health.
According to The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unintended Pregnancy, preventing teen pregnancy reduces poverty, improves a teens lifelong income, increases the graduation rate, improves health and child welfare, supports responsible fatherhood, and reduces other risky behavior.
The Health District offers a variety of family planning services through our Family Planning Clinic and Teen Health Mall. Services include contraception and contraception counseling, pregnancy testing and referral and sexually transmitted disease testing and counseling.
Recent data shows the teen birth rate in Nevada declined 72% between 1991 and 2018. The teen pregnancy rate from 1998 to 2013 (the most recent data available) declined 66%. Following the state and national trends, Washoe County has also experienced a decline in the teen birth rate.
“At a time when sexually transmitted diseases are increasing, the declining teen birth rate demonstrates the importance of community partners working together to provide education and services to our youth,” said Kevin Dick, Washoe County District Health Officer. “Collaborative efforts should continue to promote even healthier outcomes that are cost effective for our youth and our community.”
While the teen birth rate continues to decline, there are still areas for improvement to ensure the continued success. As of 2018 (latest year for which data is available), Nevada ranks 35th out of 50 states for the teen birth rate and 41st out of 50 states for the teen pregnancy rate. In Nevada, the majority of teen births are to older teens, 18-19; however, the repeat teen birth rate in Nevada remains an area for improvement. It is estimated that 17% of teen births were to teens who already had a child.
Access to confidential services for sexual and reproductive health for teens also remains a barrier and an area for improvement. Confidentiality concerns are a significant issue to teens with 1 in 5 teens aged 15-17 reporting that they would not seek sexual and reproductive health care because of concerns that their parents may find out. In one survey, only 22% of teens aged 15-17 with confidentiality concerns had received contraceptive services in the prior year.
To make an appointment or receive more information, call 775-328-2470 or by visiting the Washoe County Health District – Sexual Health Program website. Confidential services are available for those 13 and older.
The Washoe County Health District is nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board and has jurisdiction over all public health matters in Reno, Sparks, and Washoe County through the policy-making Washoe County District Board of Health. The District consists of five divisions: Administrative Health Services, Air Quality Management, Community and Clinical Health Services, Environmental Health Services and Epidemiology & Public Health Preparedness. More info can be found here.