(2) how the £26 million allocated to primary care trusts (PCTs) for programmes to reduce teenage pregnancies has been spent by each PCT; and what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the expenditure.
A total of £26.8 million has been allocated this year to strategic health authorities (SHAs) and primary care trusts (PCTs) to improve women’s knowledge of, and access to the full range of contraception, to help reduce the number of teenage pregnancies and abortions.
It is for SHAs and PCTs to determine how to use this funding most effectively to meet the needs of their local populations. However, departmental officials are working with SHAs to provide advice and spread good practice. Priority areas include encouraging innovation and ensuring equitable access to all methods of contraception including long acting reversible (LARC) methods. Guidance from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) highlighted that the National Health Service could save around £100 million through reducing unintended pregnancies if women switched to LARC.
The South West Public Health Observatory is developing a balanced score card for sexual health which will monitor a range of indicators at PCT, SHA and national level. This will be available during 2009 and the first phase will focus on outcomes for young people.