For many of the world’s 1.25 billion adolescents (aged 10–19) the right to health care, including sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services, remains unfulfilled. Although the global adolescent birth rate (births per 1,000 girls aged 15–19) has declined over the last 30 years, progress across regions is uneven, and an estimated 12 million girls aged 15-19 years still give birth each year, mostly in Africa and Asia. Maternal conditions are the second leading cause of mortality among girls aged 15–19. Moreover, childbearing under age 15, still common in some countries, is associated with high risk of mortality and serious health and social problems for very young mothers and their children.

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