Barriers to Sexual Health Services Faced by the Adolescent Population in Mexico – A Narrative Review
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Adolescent sexual health is seen to be a growing issue globally with the adolescent population continuing to rise rapidly. In order for countries to meet to Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) sexual health services must be accessible for all, including adolescents. Mexico is seen to be making some progress through new policy introduction however many barriers still inhibit adolescents from accessing sexual health services. This study is a narrative review of the literature to uncover the barriers to sexual health services facing the adolescent population in Mexico as well as understanding how this may impact sexual health outcomes. An electronic search was conducted through Web of Science, PubMed, Medline, CINAHL, Science Direct, Scopus and Discover for peer reviewed articles published in the English language between 2010 and 2020 on adolescent sexual health in Mexico. A total of 81 papers were retrieved from the search from which 13 meeting the inclusion criteria and selected for the final review. From the literature four main themes emerged as barriers preventing adolescents in Mexico accessing Sexual Health services. These themes are; 1) Education, 2) Parental Support and Communication, 3) Accessibility and Availability of Services, 4) Cultural Barriers to Sexual Health Services. This study concludes that adolescents still continue to face barriers to sexual health services and in order for these barriers to be overcome multiple steps must be taken. Sex education must be improved to provide adolescents with the correct knowledge of sexual health and the services that are available to them. Further information must be provided to the wider community to reduce the stigma associated with sexual health and accessing sexual health services. Finally, Adolescent Friendly Health Services (AFHS) must be made available to the adolescent population to ensure they are receiving safe, confidential and evidenced based case through a service that meets their needs.