Surrey

Epsom Hospital see fall in teenage births

Teenage pregnancy
Image caption Teenage pregnancy rates have been falling at Epsom Hospital

Figures for teenagers giving birth at a Surrey hospital have fallen by 28% in a year, while the number of pregnancies in women aged 36 and over has risen.

Epsom Hospital said it showed the NHS trust was "making headway" in educating young people about relationships.

The figures showed the hospital cared for 67 pregnant teenagers, aged 19 and under, in 2009, and 52 in 2010.

In the same period, the number of women aged 36 and over giving birth rose from 478 to 493.

Sally Sivas, head of midwifery at Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust, said: "Teenage pregnancy has always been a controversial matter, but I think these figures show we are making headway in educating local young people about sex and relationships."

She said the trust had worked with other NHS partners and local GPs to offer young people extra support, education and advice.

She added: "This is good news for older women who are falling pregnant too.

"There could be any number of reasons why women and their partners are waiting a little longer to start families, but it is definitely one of the trends we're seeing now.

"Advances in medical care, coupled with the fact that people are becoming increasingly health conscious and taking better care of themselves, mean that many older women are falling pregnant and having healthy babies."

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