The latest Philippine Statistic Authority (PSA) data has shown a seven percent increase in the number of Filipino minors, aged 15 years old and below, who got pregnant in 2019 compared to the previous year.

Overall, the number of Filipino minors who gave birth in 2019 rose to 62,510, which was slightly higher than the 62,341 minors in 2018.

According to PSA report released on Monday, this was the 9th year that the commission has recorded a consistent rise in teenage pregnancy cases.

“As a national and social emergency, the spread of teenage pregnancy across the archipelago still persists at an alarming rate,” Population and Development Undersecretary Juan Antonio Perez III said in his statement.

CALABARZON recorded 8,008 cases of teenage pregnancy while National Capital Region logged 7,546.

Perez added that the national government has already prioritized the teenage pregnancy reduction, being identified as one of the major factors for poverty as they continue to address the problem in the country.

Perez also said that the Congress also asked them to closely work with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and provide social protection to adolescent mothers.

He said that POPCOM is also currently participating in The Challenge Initiative—a tripartite partnership launched in November 2020 among POPCOM, the Zuellig Foundation and the Melinda and Bill Gates Institute—which will strategically tackle teenage pregnancy in many levels of communities all over the country.

““This requires more than a whole-of-government approach. Thus, we are calling on the private sector, LGUs, development partners and relevant government agencies to collaborate closely with us in arresting this social menace grappling our youth,” he added.