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Socioeconomic Differences in Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health: Marriage

Rafael Cortez, Jennifer Yarger, Mara Decker and Claire Brindis

No 93542, Health, Nutrition and Population (HNP) Knowledge Briefs from The World Bank

Abstract: Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health (ASRH) is one of five areas of focus of the World Bank's Reproductive Health Action Plan 2010-2015 (RHAP), which recognizes the importance of addressing ASRH as a development issue with important implications for poverty reduction. Delaying childbearing and preventing unintended pregnancies during adolescence has been shown to schooling, future employment, and earnings (Greene & Merrick, 2005). Early marriage often marks the beginning of exposure to the risk of pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Research has shown that adolescent marriage is associated with unplanned pregnancy, rapid repeat childbirth, inadequate use of maternal health services, and poor birth outcomes, among other negative maternal and child health outcomes (Godha, Hotchkiss, and Gage, 2013; Raj & Boehmer, 2013; Santhya, 2011). Furthermore, research in Ethiopia has found that adolescent females who marry before the age of 15 are at higher risk of intimate partner violence and coercive sex than those who marry between ages 15-18 (Erulkar, 2013). At the 65th World Health Assembly, representatives agreed that early marriage is a violation of the rights of children and adolescents. Early marriage is illegal in most of the places where it occurs. It limits young girls' autonomy, knowledge, resources, and decision-making power (World Bank, 2014). Adolescent marriage is also much more likely to affect females than males: in the developing world, 16 percent of females are married in comparison to 3 percent of males (UNFPA, 2013).

Keywords: access to health services; adolescence; ADOLESCENT; adolescent females; adolescent fertility; Adolescent Health; Adolescent Pregnancy; adolescent women; adolescents; ... See More + dulthood; aged; birth outcomes; child health; Child Marriage; childbearing; childbirth; coercive sex; Developing Countries; early adolescent; Early marriage; educational attainment; empowerment; families; family planning; female; fertility; fertility rates; gender; Girl Child; Gynecology; HIV; implications for poverty reduction; Infant; Infant Mortality; infections; International Center for Research on Women; intimate partner; laws; levels of fertility; life expectancy; lower fertility; maternal health; maternal mortality; maternal mortality rates; Nutrition; policy dialogue; poor health; Population Knowledge; primary education; provision of services; REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH; Reproductive Health Outcomes; rights of children; risk of pregnancy; rural areas; rural residence; Service Utilization; sex; sexually transmitted infections; SOCIOECONOMIC DIFFERENCES; socioeconomic status; STIs; UNFPA; unintended pregnancies; unplanned pregnancy; urban areas; use of maternal health services; violence; Violence Against Women; vulnerable populations; will; young girls; Young Women (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 4 pages
Date: 2015-01
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dem and nep-hea
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