The Deputy Regional Director of Health in charge of Public Health in the Central Region, Dr Kweku Karikari, has underscored the need to provide teenagers with family planning and other services to help prevent unwanted pregnancies, in view of the dire repercussions of unsafe abortions.
He said it was no secret that teenagers were engaging in unprotected sex which could end up in unwanted pregnancies, and added that they usually ended up engaging in unsafe abortions which usually led to death.
At a review and training workshop for district coordinating directors and health officials in the Central Region in Cape Coast last Tuesday, Dr Karikari said there was no need to lose teenagers through unsafe abortions while the pregnancies could be prevented.
The workshop, which was organised by the Regional Directorate of Health, in collaboration with the Central Regional Coordinating Council with sponsorship from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), was to strengthen collaborations between the district assemblies and the health directorate in promoting family planning activities in the communities.
Dr Karikari said it was very critical that communities understood the relevance of family planning to the development process and accepted the services to make a meaningful impact on the quality of life of families and communities.
“Families and communities must be ready to use family planning methods after understanding the effect it could have on their families. Health personnel must not be seen to be forcing family planning on the people, and that is why we are undertaking this collaboration,” he said.
Dr Karikari said there were still a lot of challenges with acceptance, adding that a lot more needed to be done to make the needed impact.
The District Coordinating Director for Ekumfi, Mr P. K. Asamoah, said family planning was a social issue which must involve all stakeholders, and pointed out that the district assemblies were ready to commit resources to the process to ensure planned families.
“If the families are planed well, we will certainly have better communities,” he said.
A Director at the Central Regional Coordinating Council, Mr David Allan Paintsil, said district assemblies must be more involved in family planning activities to ensure sustained development in their communities, and urged the assemblies to contribute their quota to help build stronger families.