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Drop in teen pregnancies welcomed

Health chiefs have hailed the success of a number of initiatives designed to cut the number of teenage pregnancies in Tyneside and Northumberland.

Figures released by the Office for National Statistics show that conception rates among under-18s have fallen since 1998 in both regions.

North Tyneside saw the teenage conception rate fall by 16.6% from 1998 to 2006, the latest year that data is available for.

Meanwhile, Northumberland's rate dropped by 14.1% during the same period.

Vivien Hollyoak, North Tyneside's director of public health, spoke on behalf of North Tyneside and Newcastle Primary Care Trusts and Northumberland Care Trust, and welcomed the results.

She said: "We are pleased with the continued reduction in teenage conception rates which is a result of the hard work by the primary care organisations working in partnership with the local authorities and stakeholders to bring down the teenage conception rates."

Projects include pharmacists offering hormonal contraception to youngsters, and more advice and support on sexual health matters for youngsters and free condoms for under-25s if they are members of the C-card scheme.

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North Tyneside Primary Care Trust

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