Kaiser Permanente West LA To Host Free Teen Pregnancy Prevention Seminar
September 22, 2016
KP West LA continues its commitment to educating teens and their parents about pregnancy consequences and prevention, birth control options, and sexually-transmitted diseases with its Teen Pregnancy Prevention Seminar on Oct. 1 from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
It’s a four-hour seminar that has been hosted for local teens between the ages of 13 and 16 by KP West LA, twice a year since 2002. The seminar typically has about 80 attendees, and is open to the public.
“Whether or not our teens are having sex they are being exposed to sex at a younger age though media and overall societal changes,” said Raveen Gogia, MD, Obstetrics and Gynecology at KP West LA who is the physician in charge of the seminar.
“I think it is really important to target larger groups of teens and provide education about contraception options and consequences of STDs. Then we allow teens to have the resources to make the appropriate choices. If teens are going to be sexually active at least we inform them about how an STD or pregnancy could affect their lives and help them make better choices.”
While the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Seminar is unique to West LA, it’s part of a much larger Educational Theatre program that was started in 1985 by Kaiser Permanente – using the arts to inspire students to make healthy choices. Performances are presented to students in kindergarten to 12th grade, and use engaging theatrical performances to educate youth about everything from literacy promotion and healthy eating to bullying, conflict management, and STDs. Performances for this school year start at South and West LA schools on Sept. 14.
“Hopefully students are receiving a majority of their health education in schools and from home,” said Jennifer Lounibos, manager of program booking and communications for the Educational Theatre program. “We’re consider ourselves to be another resource which can be used to expose students to accurate information so they can make healthy choices.”
Educational Theatre will spend about 40 days in schools in West LA this school year. Some of the performances take just a few hours, while a healthy living and eating program may keep the program at the school for the entire week. Lounibos said the program targets the highest-risk communities with the least access to resources.
Attendees of the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Seminar also watch an Educational Theater performance called “What Goes Around,” which focuses on STD prevention, and unwanted pregnancy. Students then get separated from their parents and are brought to another room where they can take part in a Q&A session, where they are invited to ask any questions they may have about the topics when their parents are not around.