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Using a female-led mobile clinic to improve access to sexual and reproductive health services for rural and Aboriginal women

The Challenge

On average, women and girls living in rural and remote areas of NSW experience poorer general health, and reproductive and sexual health outcomes, than people living elsewhere in the State. This includes higher rates of teenage pregnancy, higher rates of maternal death, and higher rates of some sexually transmissible infections (STIs). All rural/regional LHDs have significantly higher teenage fertility rates than the State’s average (7.7 per 1,000 teenagers), with the rate in Western NSW LHD being more than twice as high as the State average. The rate in Bourke and Walgett Local Government Areas are 12 and 9-fold higher than the State average. Teenage pregnancies in particular have major health and social

consequences, with pregnant teenagers at high risk of eclampsia, puerperal endometritis and systemic infections during pregnancy leading to avoidable illness and hospitalisations. 


Teenage mums are also at increased risk of exposure to domestic violence, financial stress and education disruption, reflecting the need for better access to contraceptive services and comprehensive reproductive and sexual education. Women living in rural and remote areas also experience higher rates of maternal, neonatal and fetal deaths when compared to the cities. This

reflects poor levels of access to reproductive, sexual and general health services for women in rural and remote communities. 

Theory of Change

Delivering sexual and reproductive health education in rural and remote communities, and providing improved access to sexual and reproductive health care services that is culturally sage for Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal women, will reduce the level of unplanned pregnancies in teenage years.

Anticipated Outcomes

Short-Intermediate Term

Number of women and girls attending education sessions.

Number of women and girls consulted at mobile clinic.

Number of contraceptive services provided to women and girls.

Long Term Outcomes

A reduction in teenage pregnancies per 100,000 of population in rural and remote communities serviced by the clinic.

Progress

Health Literacy

-
Number of women and girls attending education sessions.

Participation

-
Number of women and girls consulted at mobile clinic.

Effectiveness

-
Number of contraceptive services provided to women 21 years of age and younger.
LAST UPDATED: 

8 December 2023

NOTES:

The project will commence in early 2024 following receipt of a grant from NSW Communities and Justice.

Contact:

Julia Faulkner, Manager Rural and Remote Health Initiatives: 0451816827

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