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Needs of Female Medical Students concerning Reproductive Health Education

Author(s): H. Gharaie1
Affiliation(s): 1Women Affairs Office, Ministry of Health and Medical Education, Tehran, Iran
Keywords: Reproductive health, education, focus group discussion

Reproductive health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, in all matters relating to the reproductive system and to its function. Improvement of the women’s health status requires not only good health services, but also their cooperation. Information about the importance and details of healthcare are necessary to ensure the best individual cooperation. Thus education is one of the most important factors of reproductive health.


In order to plan an appropriate educational programme assessment of information, insights and behaviours of the target group are needed. In this project that was implemented thorough focus group discussion insights of female medical students about reproductive health have been evaluated. A questionnaire was designed about reproductive health, and its questions were discussed by the 12 selected female medical students.


We concluded that although the students’ insight about reducing uncontrolled population was accepted but their information about family planning, sexually transmitted diseases and HIV were not significant. Most of them believed that today reproductive health education is neither enough nor appropriate, so they could not be good messengers of reproductive health in their society .In addition, theoretical, microbiological and demographic bases are more attended in these educational university programmes and unfortunately operational aspects of reproductive health, family planning, sexually transmitted diseases and their ways of transmissions and prophylactic methods are less considered. Many of the students believed that 20-25 and 24-28 years are the most suitable ages for marriage for the girls and boys, respectively. Most of them suggested beginning reproductive health education in school. Unfortunately, sometimes inappropriate nutritional behaviours are seen among students.

Lessons learned:

In view of the fact that marriage is delayed and because of our cultural background, today we need some plans of action for answering to young people’s needs. Also for planning the best such actions, there is a need for discussions and recommendation of specialists and exports, in addition to find   strategies to facilitating marriage by the government.

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