Monday, 30 July 2012: 2:15 PM
Learning Objective 1: The learner will be able to discuss the importance of health empowerment in the prevention of adolescent pregnancy.
Learning Objective 2: The learner will be able to identify areas for future research in the area of empowerment of females in the prevention of adolescent pregnancy.
In The Bahamas between the years 2,000 - 2007, the percentage of mothers under the age of 20 years accounted for 11.3 – 12.7% of all births in the country. Mothers age 15 -19 years accounted for 11.2 – 12.6% of all births. The purpose of this study was to investigate the level of empowerment among pregnant adolescents living in The Bahamas aged 18-19 years by testing the levels of autonomy, environmental mastery, personal growth, relationship with others, purpose in life and religiosity. The sample for this study was 105 pregnant adolescent females 18 and 19 years of age attending ante-natal clinics in The Bahamas. The questionnaires included demographic information, obstetric history, Psychological Well-Being and Religiosity Scales. Correlation analysis was performed to determine the significance among demographic data and levels psychological well-being and religiosity. Multiple regression analysis was performed to determine the variance explained between the number of pregnancies and level of health empowerment. Number of pregnancies was negatively correlated with all dimensions of psychological well-being, religiosity and overall empowerment. Due to the small number in the sample with repeated pregnancy the correlations were not statistically significant, except personal growth.
Number of pregnancies was negatively correlated but not statistically significant with personal growth. Number of pregnancies was negatively correlated and statistically significant with current enrollment in school. Pregnancy outcome and delivery type were positively correlated and statistically significant with number of pregnancies. Overall health empowerment levels was negatively correlated with history of depression and positively correlated with religiosity. Level of education and religiosity were positively correlated and statistically significant to the level of health empowerment. Conclusions: The
level of education and religiosity are predictors of levels of health empowerment and type of delivery and the outcome of the pregnancy are predictors to the number of pregnancies in these pregnant adolescents.