by Allanah Leahy – EM TV Online
A birth control program initiated in Colorado in the United States has reaped a ground-breaking 40 per cent drop in teen birth rates.
The anonymously-sponsored program, worth over K60 million (US$23 million), saw the distribution of around 30,000 long-acting contraceptive devices to low-income women.
As a direct result, Colorado’s teen birth rates dropped between the years 2009 and 2013. Colorado’s Family Planning Initiative funded the distribution of the intrauterine devices (IUD) throughout 68 family planning clinics.
IUDs are small, T-shaped contraceptive devices which, when inserted into the uterus, kill sperm and prevent pregnancy by making the uterine lining too thin for egg implantation. IUDs can last up to five to 10 years.
The state of Colorado subsequently saved over K112 million (US$42 million) in healthcare costs for teen births. Seven out of 10 teen pregnancies in Colorado are unplanned but a state health department study on the program reported a 35 per cent decrease in teen abortion rates.