Teenage pregnancy increases by 40% in Kenya during lockdown

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Sexual health care has been difficult to access for millions of Kenyan girls.

According to Global Citizen, Kenya has recorded a 40% increase in reported teenage pregnancies compared to last year. Since the government restricted movement in April to deal with the global pandemic, 152,000 Kenya girls have fallen pregnant.

In June 2019, Kakuma refugee camp recorded eight cases of teenage pregnancies. In 2020, they recorded 62. Girls in refugee camps are hit the hardest.

Kenya is currently going through a sexual reproductive health crisis, where the focus has been redirected to managing Covid-19. Resources have, therefore, been moved from other areas of health, like reproduction.

Also Read: Why are so many teenage girls having babies?

The United Nations Population Fund warned that 47 million low-income women are at risk of not receiving modern contraceptives, which may result in 1 million unintended pregnancies.

According to Dr Manisha Kumar, head of the Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) task force on safe abortion care: “The collateral damage of taking that kind of approach is when we shut down these routine services, we saw an increase in maternal and child death, from preventative causes.”

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