American Public Health Association (APHA) 138th Annual Meeting and Exposition
6–10 November 2010
About a quarter of the total population of Bangladesh are adolescents who do not have adequate reproductive health knowledge and information. A survey was conducted to assess adolescents' knowledge of and attitude toward reproductive health in Bangladesh, which included both qualitative and quantitative methods.
Adolescents in general lacked knowledge about pubertal changes, and a majority of them did not have correct knowledge of human reproduction. Correct knowledge of reproduction was more common among male adolescents compared to female adolescents. Similarities continue for the knowledge of family planning methods, too, as 85% of male adolescents compared to 62% of female adolescents were aware of that. Male adolescents were more likely to know about the risks of adolescent pregnancy than female adolescents. Knowledge of routes of HIV transmission was better among male adolescents than female adolescents. Findings also suggest alarmingly low levels of knowledge of non-HIV STIs among female adolescents. Regarding health-seeking behavior, female adolescents were more likely to visit health facilities; 14% of female adolescents visited health facilities for information and services compared to less than 1% of male adolescents. Multivariate analysis indicates that level of education, affiliation with social organization, and exposure to mass media significantly influenced knowledge of STI transmission and family planning methods. Efforts are needed, such as awareness of reproductive health issues, creation of demand for services, and provision of adolescent reproductive health services at facilities, to improve reproductive health knowledge and to improve health-seeking behavior of adolescents.
- Administer health education strategies, interventions, and programs
- Plan health education strategies, interventions, and programs
- Provide health care to the public
- Public health or related research
- Describe knowledge and reproductive health-seeking behavior among adolescents by gender
- Identify programmatic interventions
Return to: Guide to Population Council activities
Offsite link: APHA 2010 Conference Web site
firstname.lastname@example.org; +1 212 339 0509
Contacts and Resources
The Population Council welcomes Landis MacKellar as co-editor of Population and Development Review.