Workshop 2: Contraception and other
preventive measures tailored for adolescents and young people
Chair: A. Webb (United Kingdom) & G. Bartfai (Hungary)
The aim was to start a discussion around what may affect the use
of clinical and advisory services by young people.
Every country had some successes but all were aware that there
are still many barriers. The main area explored looked at the legal framework
that clinicians had to work in with regards to sexual health issues in minors.
In all countries an adult was defined as anyone aged 18 years or over. Below
that there is a plethora of laws which influence what care can be given whilst
maintaining confidentiality as well as being able to address issues of child
In Greece everything is legal but there is always the
possibility that a complaint can be made against the clinician via the police.
In France the usual age for consent to treatment is 15
years. Below that an abortion can be provided confidentially but not treatment
In Ireland and Portugal abortion is illegal
regardless of age and in the latter any pregnant girl under 15 years is referred
to child protection.
In Finland the clinician can use judgement to assess
maturity (11 or 12 years) and there are specialist units for child protection if
there is concern.
In Hungary parental consent is needed for anyone under
In Israel there is a special document for the Ministry of
Health to allow adolescent services, as changing the law is seen as too
In Belgium there are no particular laws regarding sexual
health services and 16 is the age for consent to treatment.
In England & Wales a new sexual offences law has
helped to clarify consent to treatment and the need to refer to specialist
The group agreed that the ESC could possibly be a conduit for
some harmonisation of rights and laws in Europe, to allow normal adolescent
development at varying ages and protection against abuse as well as unwanted
pregnancies and STIs.