ILOILO CITY: Cases of teenage pregnancy in Western Visayas are still widespread and those who get pregnant are now much younger, according to the Commission on Population Region 6 (PopCom-6).
PopCom-6 information officer II Maria Xenia Serio said the cases are alarming as they have even recorded the pregnancy of a girl as young as 12 years old in Iloilo province.
She said they are coordinating with the Department of Education to integrate Population Education in all eight high school subject areas to help address the problem.
“Every year, we conduct two skills trainings for young educators, and also for in-school youth so they can be aware on how to take good care of themselves while in adolescence,” Serio said.
Although the PopCom-6 doesn’t have the actual figures on teenage pregnancy in the region, Serio noted that the Philippines ranks second in Southeast Asia in the incidence of teenage pregnancy.
Based on the figures of the National Youth Commission, teenage pregnancies in the country doubled from 125,270 in 2000 to 206,574 in 2010.
Of the 206,574 teenage girls who got pregnant in 2010, 132,000 were 14 years old.
Last week, the Iloilo Provincial Population Office conducted a symposium attended by high school students in observance of the World Population Day on July 11.