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Policy Summaries

Summaries are available for the following policies in the database.



Albania's Strategjia Kombetare e Rinise 2007-2013
   Full Policy: 2,307.1 kb

Document is in Albanian.



Bangladesh National Youth Policy
   Full Policy: 717.9 kb

The Updated national Youth Policy has been approved in the year of 2003 and the ongoing youth programmes are being implemented in the light of approved National Youth Policy. Henceforth, the responsibility of registering the youth clubs has been given to the Department of Youth Development.  According to this National Youth Policy all Bangladeshi citizens aging 18-35 years shall be treated as youth.

Available online at:



Haiti Politique Nationale de Sante des Jeunes et des Adolescents
   Full Policy: 261.7 kb

Les adolescents et les jeunes doivent être ciblés dans les politiques et programmes du pays. Lorsque les jeunes atteignent l’âge adulte sans avoir obtenu un niveau d’ éducation et de santé adéquat, le coût à payer par la société devient encore plus élevé que celui nécessaire aux programmes normaux de santé et d’éducation. Le gouvernement Haïtien reconnaît la nécessité d’avoir une politique spécifique en vue de la prise en charge des besoins spécifiques des adolescents. Cette Politique souligne en tout premier lieu l’engagement du gouvernement d’Haïti en ce qui concerne la santé des citoyens. Toutefois, elle ne comprend aucune disposition spécifique visant les problèmes des adolescents et des jeunes. Pour combler cette lacune, une nouvelle Politique Nationale pour la santé et le développement intégré des adolescents et des jeunes en Haïti est proposée. Cette nouvelle politique nationale vise à stimuler le développement des adolescents dans différents domaines d’action : santé, justice, éducation, emploi et participation sociale.



India National Youth Policy
   Full Policy: 82.2 kb

The National Youth Policy, 2003 reiterates the commitment of the entire nation to the composite and all-round development of the young sons and daughters of India and seeks to establish an All-India perspective to fulfill their legitimate aspirations so that they are all strong of heart and strong of body and mind in successfully accomplishing the challenging tasks of national reconstruction and social changes that lie ahead.

India Population Policy (Uttar Pradesh)
   Full Policy: 261.3 kb
In March 2000, the Government of Uttar Pradesh started the process of developing a population policy with a view to control the rapidly increasing population of the state. The main objective of the policy is to bring down the total fertility rate to 2.1 by the year 2016, as well as, to meet the economic and social development needs. With a view to provide protection to the health of mothers and children, level of access and quality of services would be raised with regard to proper care of pregnant women, provision for safe delivery and child health. Participation of males would be increased in family planning programmes.


Jamaica National Youth Policy
   Full Policy: 870.0 kb

The National Youth Policy (1994) represented Jamaica’s first comprehensive policy on youth. Among the priority areas identified by the 1994 Policy were the need for an institutional focal point to ensure effective coordination of and collaboration on youth related programmes and research and act as an information clearinghouse. Consequently the National Centre for Youth Development (NCYD) was established in 2000 to fulfill this mandate. The second major outcome of the 1994 Policy was the re-introduction of the National Youth Service (NYS), in 1995 with a programme that emphasizes development of leadership skills and enhancement of the social skills of youth. Other provisions of the 1994 Policy related to health, sports, education, and employment. In 2001, the findings of a review of the current situation among youth and a critique of the 1994 Policy by stakeholders pointed to the need for improvement in the Policy so as to better address the development of youth from a holistic perspective. As a result a National Youth Policy Steering Committee with representatives from over thirty organizations was established in August 2001 and met monthly to guide the policy revision process. The process was informed by consultations with youth, youth-serving organizations and local and international development partners across Jamaica. This Policy, while targeting youth, recognizes the need to utilize the life-cycle approach to strengthen the development of Jamaica’s human capital. Cognizant of the need to provide an environment suitable for the positive development of children, this Policy supports provisions for the care, development and protection of children as outlined in the National Policy on Children (1997). The Policy will be supported by a National Strategic Plan for Youth Development (NSPYD) which will act as the guide to its implementation over the next five to ten years. This Policy provides a common framework for effectively developing our youth. It succeeds or fails on the strength of the nation’s commitment to the future.



Lesotho National Health and Social Welfare Policy
   Full Policy: 126.1 kb

The goal of the health and social welfare sector, which contributes to the vision of the country’s development, is to have a healthy population, living a quality and productive life by 2020. The mission of the health and social welfare sector is to facilitate the establishment of a system that will deliver quality health care efficiently and equitably, and that will guarantee social welfare to all. The following are key core values articulated in the Constitution of Lesotho and in the Vision 2020. They will guide the health sector policies: a) Unity and solidarity with one another; b) The spirit of sharing benefits and responsibilities; c) Respect of self and for others; d) Humanity in development strategies; d) Family bond and primacy of family unit; e) Gender sensitivity and responsiveness, and special consideration of women due to their special reproduction role; f) Transparency in activities, actions and resource use; g) Accountability for resources and actions; and g) Participation and involvement of communities and stakeholders; and h) Partnership with NGOs, churches, labour organizations and the private sector.



Namibia National Policy for Reproductive Health
   Full Policy: 848.2 kb

The Namibian National Policy for Reproductive Health states that, "adolescents have the right to all information on sexual and reproductive health, and access to quality adolescent friendly services." Adolescents are defined as individuals between the ages of 10-19, and youth ages 19-30.

To this end, the policy contains a number of objectives dealing specifically with adolescents and youth, including:

  • To reduce the adolescent contribution to total pregnancy from 10% to 8% by 2005
  • To provide adolescent friendly health services in 75% of all public health facilities by 2005
  • To reduce the prevalence of HIV/AIDS among women aged 15 to 19 from 12% to 10% and 20-24 years from 20% to 15% respectively by 2005
  • To increase access to adolescent friendly health services for 80% of all adolescents by 2005

The policy promotes the establishment and promotion of adolescent friendly health services at all levels of the health care system. The community health development committees have to following responsibilities: to sensitize community leaders to adolescent reproductive health issues, to provide basic information and education on these issues, to establish referral services with local health facilities, and to be a location for tetanus immunizations for 15-year-old girls. The Ministry of Basic Education Sport and Culture and the Ministry of Higher Education, Youth and Employment Creation are also given responsibilities, which include integrating reproductive health into the life sciences curriculum, providing counseling services, and training youth officers in reproductive health issues.

Indicators that will be used to measure progress in these areas specifically monitoring youth include:

  • Proportion of health care facilities with at least one health care provider trained in adolescent reproductive health.
  • HIV prevalence rate among adolescents
  • Proportion of new STIs among adolescents
  •  Teenage pregnancy rate
  • Proportion of adolescents who know about the prevention of HIV infection

Namibia National Policy on HIV/AIDS for the Education Sector
   Full Policy: 1,863.1 kb

The Ministries of Education have recognised the centrality of the prevention of HIV/AIDS, the support of people infected and affected with HIV/AIDS and the mitigation of the effects of HIV/AIDS. Interventions in education should provide the knowledge, and encourage the development of attitudes and skills, with which the spread and impact of the epidemic could be alleviated.

The development of this policy was a collaborative effort. The education sector, through the Policy Working Group of the Joint HIV/AIDS Committee for Education, and under the leadership of the Legal Assistance Centre, conducted focus group discussions at all levels of the education sector, regional consultations, forum meetings and a national conference. In May this year the Cabinet approved the policy. The HIV/AIDS policy provides the foundation for the National Strategic Plan on HIV/AIDS-Medium Term Plan II 1999-2004. The policy reflects the human rights provisions contained in the Constitution of the Republic of Namibia, the Namibian HIV/AIDS Charter of Rights and the international conventions ratified by Namibia.

This policy formalises the rights and responsibilities of every person involved, directly or indirectly, in the education sector with regard to HIV/AIDS: the learners, their parents and caretakers, teachers, administrators, ancillary staff, planners, in fact the whole of civil society. It underscores the dignity of all affected and infected by the disease and the respect that is their due. The policy provides guidelines to ensure that all in the education sector are fully informed about the disease, the way it is transmitted, the consequences and living positively with it.



Nigeria Edo State Draft Strategic Plan for Improving Reproductive Health of Young Adults
   Full Policy: 815.6 kb

This policy was designed to address the health issues of young adults and adolescents in Edo State, Nigeria. Among the concerns of the policy are high rates of unplanned pregnancies, high rates of STD/HIV/AIDS, poor health seeking behavior of youths, and irregular use of contraceptives. The policy outlines priority sexual health issues identified by youth.

Youth or "young adults" are defined as individuals 10-24 years of age and constitute approximately 30% of the Edo state population.

The policy objectives are:

  • To improving youth-parent, youth-teacher communication and improvement of peer-to-peer communication
  • To increase availability of, and accessibility to, quality adolescent reproductive health information and services
  • To improve youth participation and involvement in YAARH programs
  • To improve political commitment and community support for the implementation of young adults and adolescents reproductive health programs and policies.
  • To reduce socio-cultural and traditional barriers to YAARH
  • To improve socio-economic status of young adults and adolescents in the Edo State
  • To build the capacity of reproductive health personnel to provide youth-friendly services
  • To mobilize and maximize human and financial resources for YAARH programs and activities
  • To establish mechanisms and systems for monitoring and evaluation of RH programs

Strategies designed to meet these objectives are:

  • social mobilization and advocacy
  • improving access to quality youth friendly services
  • youth involvement and participation, capacity building and skills development
  • education and counseling
  • monitoring and evaluation, research and resource mobilization

Specific indicators are described in detail in the policy. A logical framework is also provided in the policy.

Nigeria National Adolescent Health Policy
   Full Policy: 623.2 kb

This policy recognizes adolescents as persons within the ages of 10 to 24 years. Its definition of health includes mental and social well being, as well as education development, proper participation in community activities, and the ability to contribute to the socioeconomic development of the community.

Specific policy objectives include:

  • To promote the acquisition of appropriate knowledge by adolescents.
  • To create a supportive climate for policies and laws addressing adolescent health needs.
  • To train and sensitize adolescents and other relevant groups in the skills needed to promote effective healthcare and health behavior.
  • To facilitate provision of information, guidance, and services for health promotion, prevention, and treatment and rehabilitation.

Program areas include sexual behavior, reproductive health, nutrition, accidents, drug abuse, education, and career development, and parental responsibilities and social adjustment. The following strategies will be used to meet the policy objectives:

  • overall development
  • psycho-social development
  • sexual and reproductive health
  • problem behaviors
  • overcoming disadvantages
  • program support.

The policy proposes, under the leadership of the Federal Ministry of Health, the creation of a National Committee on Adolescent Health to execute the policy while a National Program on Adolescent Health to be responsible for direct service provision and research.

The policy also calls for the formation of adolescent health committees for each state and local government area, and outlines the role of each level of government. International agencies, specialized agencies, private institutions, and relevant ministries are listed among the possible collaborators.

Nigeria National Reproductive Health Policy and Strategy
   Full Policy: 819.5 kb

The Nigerian National Reproductive Health Policy and Strategy affirms that reproductive health is the right of all women, men, and adolescents. Reproductive health is defined, based on the WHO definition of health, as "a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity, in all matters related to the reproductive system and to its functions and processes."

According to the policy, reproductive health care services include: (1) family-planning counseling, (2) information, education, communication and services, (3) education and services for prenatal care, (4) safe delivery and post-natal care, (5) infant and women's health care, (6) prevention and treatment of infertility, (7) prevention and treatment of infections, sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS, (8) breast cancer and cancers of the reproductive system, and (9) discouragement of harmful traditional practices, such as female genital mutilation.

The policy does pay particular attention to youth and adolescent reproductive health concerns, characterizing the current state of adolescent reproductive health in Nigeria as "poor." The objectives of the government directly addressing youth reproductive health include:

  • To reduce unwanted pregnancies, among adolescents by 50%
  • To increase the proportion of people, including adolescents, who have access to accurate and comprehensive reproductive health information and services by 50%
  • To increase knowledge of reproductive biology and promote responsible behaviors of adolescents regarding prevention of unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections
  • To increase access to appropriate reproductive health information to all in-school and out-of-school adolescents
  • To introduce into school curricula, sexuality and family life education
  • To increase access to comprehensive youth-friendly health services including counseling for all young people, and youths with disabilities to 20%
  • To initiate and support the enactment and review of laws relevant to adolescent health.
  • To promote the enactment of laws to eliminate early marriage by determining a minimum age for marriage

The Federal Ministry of Health is responsible for initiating and maintaining a multi-sectoral approach to reproductive health care that should involve the Ministry of Women Affairs and Youth Development. The State Ministry of Health is responsible for identifying priority health programs related to women and adolescents of reproductive age.

Nigeria National Youth Policy & Plan of Action
   Full Policy: 1,220.7 kb

The Nigerian National Reproductive Policy recognizes that youth are a diverse group and define them as individual between 18 and 35 years of age. The Policy states that this group represents the most active and most vulnerable sector of the population, socially, emotionally, and in terms of socio-economics. Most youth lack reproductive health information and services, although approximately fifty percent of this population is sexually active

The health component of this policy strives to "seek and offer solutions to youth problems such as drug abuse and addiction, teenage pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, HIV/AIDS, cultism, examination malpractices, etc." In order to fulfill this goal, the policy proposes the following:

  • Promote healthy services and sex education and family planning techniques.
  • Eliminate early parenthood.
  • Introduce sex, reproductive, and health education in post-primary schools, especially for female students.
  • Establish HIV/AIDS awareness clubs in post primary schools and encourage membership therein.
  • Promote programs aimed at addressing the peculiar social, educational, health and reproductive problems of women in general.
  • Eliminate harmful traditional practices that affect women generally and, in particular, the female adolescent youth.
  • Establish healthcare institutions and rehabilitation centers to provide for the needs of youth with disabilities and/or health problems.
  • Promote public enlightenment programs that provide knowledge and awareness about the dangers of STDs and HIV/AIDS.
  • Establish rehabilitation centers for chronic substance abusers and drug addicts.
  • Place increased attention on health education in schools, with emphasis on personal hygiene, first aid, food and nutrition, reproductive health and communicable diseases.

The policy recognizes certain rights of youth related to health, including the right to adequate health-care, the right to protection against the dangers of substance abuse, alcoholism, sexual harassment and exploitation, and HIV/AIDS, the right to be protected against harmful traditional practices, and the right of the disabled to be provided with the special treatment which his/her condition requires.

The policy also outlines obligations of youth (to promote healthy, responsible, respectable lifestyles free of alcohol, drugs), as well as government, parents, and guardians.



Peru Lineamientos de Políticas de los y las Adolescentes
   Full Policy: 21.4 kb

Ministry of Health of Peru's Adolescent Health Guidelines (Lineamientos de Políticas de los y las Adolescentes) were approved in February 2005.

The available document is an image-only PDF; as such the full-text is not currently searchable.  The four major guidelines have been extracted and a new text-based PDF created for the database.

Additional information on the Guidelines can be found online at:



Philippines Adolescent and Youth Health and Development Program (AYHDP) Implementing Guidelines
   Full Policy: 34.4 kb

The call to action for Adolescent and Youth Health and Development Program (AYHDP) has prompted the DOH to come up with a guide book that contains the framework, guidelines, and service protocol for each level of health facility. This book aims to guide all our partners in developing and operationalizing programs for adolescents and young people. The guide is available at: The Implementing Guidelines are included in the database on this site. The guidelines cover: Service Delivery | Information/Advocacy | Capability Building | Research and Information Base | Monitoring & Evaluation

Philippines National Family Planning Policy
   Full Policy: 391.2 kb
The government recognizes the population issue as a priority. As such the government needs to adopt policies that will take into consideration population and reproductive health approaches that respect Filipino culture and values as well as equality between men and women. Moreover, these policies should support the ultimate goal of putting people at the center of development as espoused during the International Conference on Population and Development. Family planning as a health intervention shall be made available to all men and women of reproductive age (15-44 years old) including those reproducing earlier or beyond this age bracket.
Philippines National Policy and Strategic Framework on Male Involvement in Reproductive Health
   Full Policy: 6,790.5 kb

Considering that male involvement in reproductive health is critical to the success of the RH programs, with a positive impact on the health and well-being of women and children, and in line with the country's commitment to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, it is deemed imperative to systematically respond to this issue as well as address their specific reproductive health concerns such as sexual dysfunctions, androgen deficiency, testicular and prostate cancers. Thus, this National Policy and Strategic Framework on Male Involvement in Reproductive Health is hereby formulated. Specifically, it shall set direction as to how MIRH will be implemented in a comprehensive, systematic and holistic manner. Similarly, this policy shall complement and build upon existing initiatives in the country.

Philippines Reproductive Health Policy
   Full Policy: 670.4 kb
Reproductive Health will be consistent with national programs to improve the health of Filipinos in general by promoting personal responsibility, disseminating information and emphasizing freedom of choice in accessing to programs, services and information. It recognizes that the goals of reproductive health cannot be achieved independent of national goals and objectives for health in general. Hence, reproductive health will be seen as a fundamental part of basic health services and the exercise of reproductive rights will be promoted to empower individuals and communities to actively participate in achieving reproductive health goals and objectives.

Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone National Youth Policy
   Full Policy: 258.9 kb


  • The revised national Youth Policy of Sierra Leone has been designed to mainstream Youth activities and contributions and to highlight Youth concern as critical input in the development process.
  • The policy incorporates the following: the national Youth Development Policy, 1995; the recommendations of the National Youth Forum, 2000 and the national Youth Conference, 2001.
  • This revised policy seeks to strengthen collaboration between Youth organisations/Youth servicing Agencies, NGO's, and all line Ministries that have youth related activities.
  • The policy defines Youth as any Sierra Leonean (female and male) within the 15-35-age bracket. This does not exclude any young Sierra Leonean liable to Youth related needs, concerns and influences.
  • The policy provides guidelines as to the responsibilities of adults, the state and the private sector to youths; and the responsibilities of youth to society generally.p>


South Africa

South Africa National Youth Policy 2008-2013 (draft for discussion)
   Full Policy: 3,461.1 kb

The National Youth Policy (NYP) 2008-2013 forms part of a global trend where governments are formulating youth policies that respond to the changing conditions of young people in the 21 st Century. While this policy speaks to the particular needs and circumstances of South Africa's youth, it locates them within the African family and the global community. As countries worldwide engage in a process of continuous policy renewal, the National youth Policy 2008-2013 seeks both to contribute to this process and be informed by it. The development of the National Youth Policy 2008-2013 is based on the National Integrated Youth Development Strategy of the youth sector.

The National Youth Policy 2008-2013 is built on the foundation of both policy and programmatic interventions implemented for young people between 1994 and 2007. In many instances, these initiatives have resulted in far-reaching transformation. Although there is ample evidence suggesting that considerable progress has been made towards meeting the objectives of these

interventions and in addressing the challenges faced by young people as the target audience, the unfolding process of transformation had also revealed policy gaps and challenges that remain. The National Youth Policy 2008-2013 is specifically aimed at closing the identified gaps, addressing the challenges and recommending new measures to improve and accelerate implementation thereby making major strides in the development of young people by ensuring that they assume their rightful place in building a non-racia', non-sexist, prosperous and democratic South Africa.







Tanzania National Multisectoral Strategic Framework on HIV/AIDS
   Full Policy: 283.3 kb

This policy directly addresses young people ages 15-24 in the "strategic goals and targets" component of the policy. These are:

  1. To reduce the spread of HIV in the country by reducing by 30% the percentage of young people aged 15-24 who are HIV infected.
  2. To increase knowledge of HIV transmission in the population by 95% among young people aged 15-24 who both correctly identify ways of preventing the sexual transmission of HIV and who reject major misconceptions about HIV transmission.
  3. To reduce the adverse effects of HIV/AIDS on orphans by increasing the ration of current school attendance among orphans to that among non-orphans in the age range of 10-14 years.

Strategic objectives which address youth reproductive health are to:

  • Increase the percentage of young people aged 15-24 reporting the use of a condom during sexual intercourse with a non-regular sexual partner.
  • Increase the proportion of children and youth who feel adequately empowered to protect themselves against HIV infection.
  • Increase the number of quality adolescent sexual and reproductive health information sources.
  • Strengthen and expand comprehensive HIV/AIDS interventions for primary, secondary, and tertiary education.
  • Develop, test and integrate curricula related to sexual health matters of young people at primary and secondary school levels into the training of teachers.
  • Assure the support of parents and parent associations in dealing with reproductive health and sexual matters.
  • Encourage pupils to develop their own projects and interventions (ie. School clubs, theater groups, etc).
  • Increase the number of schools with teachers who have been trained in life-skills based HIV/AIDS education and who taught it during the last academic year.

Tanzania Youth Development Policy
   Full Policy: 649.9 kb

According to the policy the term "youth" varies from one community to another. For the purpose of this policy, however, the UN definition of youth refers to individuals between the age of 15 and 24.

The policy recognizes that there is a shortage of health services catering to youth and lists the following as health concerns for youth:

  • Sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
  • Poor nutrition resulting in stunted growth
  • Anemia and low birth weights
  • Drug abuse leading youth to promiscuous behavior and eventually ending up with mental sickness
  • Harmful traditional practices (i.e. female genital mutilation)
  • Child bearing at an early age

The two goals of the policy which relate to youth reproductive health directly are:

  1. to establish appropriate plans for providing youth health services
  2. to establish education plans for girls who drop out of school due to pregnancy

Responsibility for addressing the problems and goals enumerated is given in the policy to:

  1. The Ministry of Health is asked to ensure the availability of health services which will be accessible to youth, animate youths and the community to identify health problems which affect them, institute special programmes to combat the spread of STDs, HIV/AIDS and drug abuse, strengthen sexual health education to youth, and to prepare a curriculum on youth health which will be used to train professionals and health workers.
  2. The Ministry of Education is responsible for strengthening and providing family life education to youth.
  3. The family is requested to make sure that youth get enough nutritious food.

In addition, village and local governments, NGOs, and the youth council and development committee have specific implementation responsibilities.


Timor Leste

Timor-Leste Decree-LAW No. 13/2008 establishing the Organisational Structure of the Office of
   Full Policy: 44.0 kb


This statute is aimed at establishing the Organisational Structure of the Office of the Secretary of State for Youth and Sports whereby the structure of the Office of the Secretary of State and the competences and responsibilities of the each of its services and bodies are set forth in compliance wit the Decree-Law No. 7/2007, of 5 September, which approved the Organisational Structure of the IV Constitutional Government of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste. 

The Office of the Secretary of State for Youth and Sports, hereinafter referred to as SEJD for short, is the Government’s main body charged with designing, executing, coordinating and assessing the policy as defined and approved by theCouncil of Ministers for the areas of promotion of the youth’s well-being and development, physical education, and sports.

Timor-Leste National Reproductive Health Strategy 2004-2015
   Full Policy: 616.6 kb

Reproductive health has the highest priority of the Government of Timor-Leste as the country grapples with the highest fertility rate in the world and unacceptable maternal and child mortality rates while attempting to raise the strings of human capital through public health interventions. This National Reproductive Health Strategy will provide a significant input and sense of direction into addressing these issues. The National Reproductive Health Strategy (NRHS) outlines the following priority actions to set up an enabling environment to meet the objectives:

• Coordinating stakeholders and efforts

• Strengthening partnerships

• Integrating systems

• Advocating resource priority

• Focusing national and political commitment

• Designing national standards, protocols and guidelines

• Promoting regulatory frameworks

• Improving quality


Component 1. Young People’s Sexual and Reproductive Health



Uganda AIDS Control Policy Proposals
   Full Policy: 1,268.2 kb

The policy states that a multi-sectoral approach is necessary in combating HIV/AIDS and implementing specific strategies. It explains the role of the Ugandan AIDS Commission, as well as the actions necessary to defend the country's economy, since it is the most economically productive sector that is being hardest hit by HIV/AIDS.

References to youth reproductive health include:

  • Annual HIV testing shall be mandatory for students admitted under public sponsorship to tertiary institutions.
  • Appropriate AIDS control programs for out-of school youths shall be developed and actively implemented.
  • The care of orphans and other needy children shall be the primary responsibility of the nation and the local communities.

Each of the policies mentioned in the document have a justification and implementation section that further describe and clarify their meaning. The policy does not specify an age range for youth.

Uganda National Adolescent Health Policy 2004
   Full Policy: 862.7 kb

The National Adolescent Health Pollcy is an integral part of the National Development process and reinforces the commitment of the Government to integrate young people in the development process. The policy complements all sectoral policies and programmes and defines structures and key target areas for ensuring that adolescent health concerns are mainstreamed in all planning activities. The policy recognizes the critical roles adolescents can play in promoting their own health and development and emphasizes the need for their participation in planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of programmes within the context of theeconomic, social, cultural, and spiritual realities of Uganda without giving In to those aspects that are harmful I dangerous to the health of adolescents. It seeks to promote and advance gender, equity and equality emphasising the elimination of all forms of gender bias, discrimination and violence using a multi-sectoral approach. The policy further seeks to strengthen and promote an enabling social and legal environment for the provision of high quality, accessible adolescent health services.  

The policy outlines:

- Beneficiaries of the adolescent health policy

- Definitions and rationale for having an adolescent health policy

- Policy goal, objectives and targets to monitor implementation of the policy, reproductive health targets, substance abuse and mental health targets, accidents and disabilities targets, nutrition and oral health targets, socio-economic consequences/occupation health targets

- Strategies to implement the policy, including advocacy for the policy, behavioural change communication, training of services providers, service implementation, resource mobilisation for adolescent health, research, co-ordination

- Institutional framework for implementing the policy, Meetings, Functions, Local Government

- Monitoring and evaluation

Uganda National Adolesecent Health Policy
   Full Policy: 1,004.7 kb
According to this policy, "young people" refers to those individuals between the ages of 10 and 24 years. This definition includes both adolescents (ages 10-19) and youth (ages 15-24). Although they are defined explicitly, the terms young people, adolescents and youth are used interchangeably throughout the policy
Objectives of the policy are:
  • To protect the rights of and to promote provision of better health information and services for young people with their involvement in conceptualizing, designing, implementing, monitoring, and evaluating health programs.
  • To promote responsible health-related behavior amongst adolescents including relations based on equity and mutual respect between genders, and to sensitize them to such gender issues as they grow into adulthood.
  • To provide legal and social protections of young people, especially the girl child, against harmful traditional practices and all forms of abuse, including sexual abuse, exploitation, trafficking, and violence.
  • To increase capacity to meet the needs of young people by training providers and reorienting the health system at all level, strengthening local institutions in research, monitoring and evaluation of adolescent health needs and programs, promoting dissemination and utilization of relevant information.
  • To advocate for increased resource commitment for the health of adolescents and to improve coordination and networking between different sectors and among Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs)/Youth Securing NGOs working in the field of adolescent health.
The policy includes the following targets:
  • Increase in knowledge about STIs and HIV/AIDS, age at sexual first sexual intercourse, proportion of adolescents abstaining from sex before marriage, contraceptive use (including dual protection and emergency contraction) rate among sexually active adolescents, and increase in maternal care for young mothers.
  • Delay in first childbirth and reduction in risk of maternal death in age group 15-24
  • Integrate post-abortion care integrated in all tertiary and secondary facilities, and appropriate primary care facilities, with emphasis on post-abortion family planning, and review of abortion law.
  • STI management and HIV/AIDS counseling integrated in all activities of tertiary, secondary, and primary facilities.
  • Harmful traditional practices reduced through appropriate policies, legislation, and programs.
  • Girl child enrolment and retention in schools increased to match that of boys, and readmit pregnant schoolgirls to the education system after they have delivered.
  • Incorporate adolescent reproductive health in the curricula of all health training institutions.
Strategies that will be used to achieve these objectives are advocacy, IEC, training, services, resource mobilization, research, and coordination. The Ministry of Health is responsible for leading the adolescent health programs, and for the formation of a National Steering Committee on Adolescent Health. Other ministries with duties outlined in the policy include the Ministry of Gender, Labor, and Social Development; the Ministry of Planning and Economic Development, the Ministry of Education, and the Ministry of Justice. Monitoring and evaluation will be conducted by the National Steering Committee on Adolescent Health.

Uganda National Policy Guidelines and Service Standards for Reproductive Health Services
   Full Policy: 1,063.7 kb

In this policy, the term "adolescent" refers to individuals from 10 to 24 years of age. A section is devoted to addressing adolescent reproductive health, with the objectives to increase availability and accessibility of appropriate, acceptable, affordable and quality sexual reproductive health information and services.

The policy lists a variety of services to be provided to adolescents, including family planning, emergency contraception, maternal health care, post-natal care, voluntary counseling and testing, post abortion care, STI/HIV/AIDS care, and support for the prevention and protection of harmful traditional practices such as female genital mutilation. Information will also be provided to adolescents concerning sex, sexuality and life skills, drug and substance abuse, supportive organizations, the rights of adolescents, and proper nutrition and hygiene. Services will be delivered by various groups, including schools, religious and community centers, youth and adolescent clubs, youth council meeting places, health units, and through community outreach.

The policy also calls for information, education and communication (IEC) activities, with target audiences such as parents/guardians, service providers, school teachers, sectoral extension workers, NGOs, religious bodies and leaders, high risk male groups, and community leaders at all levels, as well as adolescents themselves. Peer educators, service providers, teachers, and community reproductive health workers are some of the groups that are responsible for carrying out the IEC activities.

Adolescents are also considered a target group for other policy sections and objectives, such as integrating STI/HIV/AIDS into reproductive health services, the management of obstetric fistula, post abortion care, community outreach, maternal and newborn care, and family planning. Finally, the policy also states that no verbal or written consent is required from a parent, guardian or spouse before a client can be given family planning services.

Uganda National Policy Guidelines for HIV Voluntary Counseling and Testing
   Full Policy: 568.8 kb

This policy addresses youth directly in one section. It states that only those who have attained the legal age of majority (18 years) can consent to voluntary counseling and testing (VCT). On the other hand, the policy recognizes that the need for VCT starts at ages earlier than 18. The age of consent, and dissent, to VCT is stated to be 12 years, however, approval of a parent or guardian is required for those youth ages 12-18. For children without a parent or guardian, the head of the institution or any other responsible adult may give approval. Emancipated minors are to be treated as adults. Finally, counselors are given the responsibility of deciding whether the testing is being carried out for the benefit of the minor, and they are also allowed to decide to whom results of the testing should be given. The counselor is not obligated to release the results to the individuals who gave consent for the testing.

Uganda Policy for the Reduction of Maternal to Child Transmission
   Full Policy: 745.3 kb

Mother to child transmission (MTCT) of HIV is the main route by which children are infected with HIV in Uganda and it is the second major mode of HIV transmission for the general public.

The issues addressed in this policy are anti-retro viral therapy in reduction of MTCT, voluntary counseling and testing (VCT), infant feeding issues- specifically the risks and benefits of breastfeeding, and additional interventions likely to reduce MTCT.

The policy recognizes the fact that youth age 15 and up make up a large section of the women that the policy is targeting. However, the special needs of youth are not specifically addressed by this policy.



Zambia National HIV/STI/TB Policy
   Full Policy: 151.4 kb

The data quoted in Zambia's National HIV/AIDS/STI/TB Policy reflects the importance of youth with regards to HIV/AIDS and STDs. However, the policy does not pay extra attention to youth.

The following are parts of the policy that address youth directly:

  • Life and HIV prevention skills provided to children and adolescents by:
    1. Ensuring HIV/AIDS/STI/TB education integrated into school curricula is regularly reviewed and implemented,
    2. Encouraging parents and guardians to communicate with young people about their sexuality and develop their life skills
    3. Encouraging and supporting integration of HIV/AIDS/STI/TB education in traditional sexual socialization institutions and activities
    4. Supporting IEC interventions that target out of school youth.
  • For orphans and vulnerable children the Government will specifically:
    1. Support training of health personnel and other youth practitioners in counseling young people on sexual and reproductive health
    2. Ensure that children and young people, regardless of their HIV status, enjoy all their rights as stated in the African Charter, UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and the relevant Zambian laws
    3. Ensure the confidentiality of children's HIV status is strictly maintained and only communicated to the child/parent/guardian or prospective foster parent in the interest of the child.
The National AIDS Council serves as a multi-sectoral body that promotes and coordinates individual and collective actions against HIV/AIDS/STI/TB, guided by this policy.

Zambia National Youth Policy
   Full Policy: 481.9 kb

The National Youth Policy was formulated to address the needs of disenfranchised groups, particularly women and youth, affected by the economic Structural Adjustment Program (SAP). This policy is to be implemented along with economic programs.

The Policy defines "youth" as an individual between 15-25 years old. This age range is consistent with the educational system and aims to include youth who have dropped out of school and/or are unemployed.

The Policy explains the social, economic, and political problems that have hampered youth development in the country. It outlines general goals, objectives, and strategies.

While the policy recognizes that youth continue to face "adverse health effects" because of economic policies, it does not include any objective or strategy to address youth health or reproductive health needs.

Zambia Reproductive Health Policy
   Full Policy: 499.0 kb

The Reproductive Health (RH) Policy is directed by ten guiding principles, each of which is described in the policy. The two that address youth reproductive health directly are:

  1. commitment to the concept of RH which includes safe motherhood (including safe abortion care), family planning, adolescent Health, gender and the reduction of poverty
  2. provision of RH information and services to all regardless of age, gender, and marital of socioeconomic status.

The objectives of the adolescent health section are to:

  1. empower adolescents by equipping them with life skills which include assertiveness, self esteem, value clarification and responsible decision making
  2. increase the accessibility and availability of affordable youth friendly health services to adolescents/youth at all levels of the health care system.

Strategies to achieve these objectives are:

  • To provide family life education and life skills for in and out of school youth so that they can make responsible decisions.
  • To incorporate family life education in the curriculum of vocational training centers for out of school youth.
  • To increase the number of service delivery points providing adolescent/youth health services at each level of the health care system.
  • To define the role of traditional health care system in adolescent/youth reproductive health.
  • To encourage more collaboration between traditional and formal health care sectors.
  • To strengthen interpersonal communication and services between young people and youth reproductive health (YRH) peer educators.

The other sections of the policy which address YRH issues are:

  • Family Planning Section - calls for the provision of commodities including contraceptives in every facility to every individual of reproductive age.
  • Maternal Nutrition Section - ensures that the nutritional status of women, and adolescent girls in particular is improved to prevent health problems.
  • Other Reproductive Health Issues Section - conduct research on special needs of adolescents and youth gender sensitization in order to improve the design and execution of reproductive health interventions.

The Ministry of Health is responsible for coordination, evaluation, and monitoring of the policy's implementation.

The definition of "youth" is not specified in the Policy.

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