More than 33,000 girls under the legal age of consent have been provided with long-acting contraceptive implants or hormonal injections by NHS sexual health clinics over the last four years.
The figures were compiled by the government’s Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) and show 5400 under-16-year-olds were given the contraceptive implant; and, of those, 1800 were aged 14 or under.
Three thousand teenage girls aged 15 and under received a hormonal injection; and, of those, 800 were under 14 years old.
The makers of the leading implant, Nexplanon, have said the effectiveness of the implant has only been established in women aged between 18-40 years old.
Leading Christian charity CARE is calling for urgent answers following the revelations. CARE CEO Nola Leach said, ‘It is extremely alarming that the NHS is providing contraceptive implants to under-age girls because by doing so, they are putting vulnerable teenage girls at real risk of abuse.
‘This completely undermines the point of having an age of consent, a law that is designed to protect children, and rightly so, from abuse. These implants do not even need parental consent and so, yet again, parents are sidelined and the principal of parental authority fatally undermined.
‘By providing teenage girls who are under the age of consent with long-acting contraceptives, medical professionals are in effect facilitating illegal sex, which is morally indefensible’.