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P34B lost yearly due to teen pregnancy

By CHARINA ECHALUCE

Due to the continued prevalence of high teenage pregnancy in the country, an estimated P34 billion is being lost yearly, it was disclosed during the multi-sectoral dialogue on the fifth anniversary of the passage of the Reproductive Health (RH) law.

DoH-National Implementation Team for the RH Law chairperson Esperanza Cabral reported that tens of billions of pesos are being lost with teenage girls getting pregnant early.

“The age-earning profile of females, who completed high school, is much higher than those who did not complete high school…. The accumulated economic loss is really big,” noted Cabral, who is a former DoH chief.

The estimates revealed that those who did not complete their high school studies due to childbearing would merely earn P46 per day at the age of 22; P147 per day at 32 years old; and P213 per day at the age of 42. These are lower compared with the earning of those who were able to complete their HS studies with P361 per day at the age of 22; P469 per day at 32 years old; and P548 per day at the age of 42.

Cabral also reported that the number of aged 15 to 19 girls who are getting pregnant has also been increasing in numbers between 2002 and 2013.

“We are all worried about the increase in early child bearing because it is a reflection of many things in the society, including economic status and chance to be gainfully employed,” she said.

From only 4.4 percent in 2002, the number of those aged 15 to 19 and are already mothers has risen to 11 percent in 2013.

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