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Sexual and Reproductive Health Behaviors in Young People in Southern Shan State

Currently available Sexual and Reproductive Health information on youth are mostly among married people despite the fact that many health organizations including the Ministry of Health and Sports estimate high levels of unwanted pregnancies, unsafe abortions, and maternal mortalities among young unmarried women. The limited number of available studies suggested that youths do not access public facilities for their family planning needs and often rely on poor quality private sector services such as street drug vendors and quacks, particularly in remote areas. While basic characteristics of unmet need and non-use, as well as the negative consequences of the lack of SRH services for young people are anecdotally known, there is little scientific data to inform youth SRH policy and programming. Research on SRH of young people is severely needed to better understand pathways to change and develop effective interventions.

In Myanmar apart from the fact that many male youth are engaging in sexual activity before marriage, the information about sexual activity among unmarried youth is not available. This study was carried out with the aim of identifying the sexual reproductive behaviors of young people and their contraceptive utilization in order to provide evidence in establishing contraceptive service delivery which will fulfill the young people needs.

A mixed method research was carried out targeting unmarried men and women between the aged of 18 to 24 both in-school and out-of-school in two townships of Southern Shan State, Myanmar. This study involved structured self-administered tablet based questionnaire survey with 424 young people and 12 focus group discussions with young people. Focus groups were assigned by residential area (rural or urban) and sex of the respondents.

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