Croydon Council and NHS Croydon have made reducing the number of local teenage pregnancies one of their primary concerns since 2008.
The borough previously had one of the highest teenage pregnancy rates in London, but the new statistics show that the figure is now below the London average. In some boroughs, such as Enfield, the number has risen by more than 40 per cent.
In Croydon, the pregnancy rate for 15-17 year olds in 2009 was 45.7 per 1,000, a 22.7% decrease from the 1998 baseline.
Dr Peter Brambleby, director of public heath for Croydon said: “In recent years we have made reducing the rate of teen pregnancies in Croydon one of our highest priorities.”
Kate Naish, public health lead for young people, NHS Croydon, outlines Croydon Council’s key teen pregnancy strategies. They include the prevention of unplanned pregnancies, the support of pregnant teenagers and guidance for teenagers once they have become parents.
She credits effective sexual health advice services, a strong focus on targeted interventions and well-resourced youth services, as key factors responsible for this recent drop in teenage pregnancies.
Katie Greenaway, a sexual health outreach nurse at NHS Croydon said: “I’m encouraged to see that more young people in Croydon are taking a longer-term view about their sexual health and well-being.”
Croydon teens are still being discouraged from having sex at a young age and to use contraception if they do.