Latest Developments in Research & Policy

December 2016 – The Programme is really pleased that Dr. Mel Duffy and a team of researchers from the School of Nursing and Human Sciences, Dublin City University, have been awarded the contract to generate qualitative data on the staff and student experience of Relationships & Sexuality Education (RSE) in post-primary schools. The information collected will be used to support schools to improve the implementation and the quality of RSE. We look forward to working with the research team and with our colleagues in the Department of Education & Skills and the Department of Health on this important project.

October 2016 – A research summary highlighting key findings from HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme (CPP) and Tusla –Child and Family Agency research about the sexual health and sexuality education needs of young people in care is now available. This summary draws on the findings of the Sexual Health and Sexuality Education Needs Assessment of Young People in Care (SENYPIC) study. The study involved interviews with young care-leavers (aged 18 to 22), foster carers and service-providers responsible for caring for young people living in residential centres. Download the research summary here or order copies from healthpromotion.ie.

September 2016 The HSE Sexual Health and Crisis Pregnancy Programme is supporting the Irish Research Council’s ‘Research for Policy and Society Programme 2016’ that aims to enable peer-reviewed research to underpin policy decisions and to assist cultural and societal development. The Programme is calling for proposals that draw on new ideas and trans-disciplinary developments in academic fields relevant to crisis pregnancy and sexual health, in line with current national strategic objectives. The application deadline is October 28th 2016 at 4pm. For further information, please see http://research.ie/scheme/research-policy-society-2016

September 2016 – The Programme wishes to commission an appropriately skilled person or team of people to design and carry out research that will generate qualitative data on the staff and student experience of Relationships & Sexuality Education (RSE) in post-primary schools. The Programme will be supported by the Department of Education & Skills and the Department of Health in overseeing and steering this project. The Programme invites third level institutions, research organisations and individuals with relevant expertise to submit proposals for this piece of research. For more information, please log onto http://www.etenders.gov.ie/ and search for reference RFT  108896

March 2016 – New research documenting the sexual health and sexuality education needs of young people in care has been published. The Sexual Health and Sexuality Education Needs of Young People in Care (SENYPIC) study documents information gathered from an e-survey of 182 service-providers and in-depth interviews with 22 service providers, 19 foster carers, 5 birth parents and 19 young people who had left State-care. The study is presented in five standalone reports plus a composite report of the findings. It was funded by the SH CPP in partnership with Tusla and was led by Professor Abbey Hyde, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems UCD. The reports are available at http://www.crisispregnancy.ie/research-policy/research-reports/list-of-research-reports/

December 2015 – The HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme (SH&CPP) are pleased to announce that a team lead by Dr. Padraig MacNeela from the School of Psychology at the National University of Ireland, Galway, has successfully been awarded the Irish Research Council/ SH&CPP Research Grant under the new pilot award programme ‘Research for Policy and Society 2015’. Dr. Padraig MacNeela and a team of researchers from NUI Galway will conduct a study on Smart Consent: Evaluating an Intervention to Promote Active Consent on the Part of Young Adults aimed at promoting active consent to sexual activity. The proposed intervention relies on sex-positive and gender-specific approach to consent to redress a tendency toward non-verbal or passive consent, and overreliance on alcohol to overcome lack of confidence in negotiating sexual preferences. The study commenced in December 2015 and will be complete in 2017.

May 2015 – Irish Research Council’s New Pilot Award Programme ‘Research for Policy and Society 2015’ – NOW OPEN.

The Irish Research Council (IRC) has opened the call for applications to its new ‘Research for Policy and Society award’. The HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme is partnering with the IRC to fund one successful research project under this scheme. The deadline for receipt of applications is Friday 12th June. For more information on the Irish Research Council please see www.research.ie

April 2015 – Medical journals publish peer reviewed articles from Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme funded research.

Two peer reviewed journal articles, outlining findings from a recent analysis of a patient information dataset of over 42,000 women attending the Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital, have been published in international medical journals.

The first article, titled ‘A Longitudinal Study of Unplanned Pregnancy in a Maternity Hospital Setting’ explores women’s use of contraception following an unplanned pregnancy. It was published in the International Journal of Gynaecology and Obstetrics in November 2014. http://www.ijgo.org/article/S0020-7292(14)00481-0/abstract

The second article titled ‘The Clinical Outcomes of Unplanned Pregnancy in Severely Obese Women’ explores unplanned pregnancy and prenatal complications among severely obese women. It was published in the Journal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine in March 2015 http://informahealthcare.com/doi/abs/10.3109/14767058.2015.1015414

The research was funded by the HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme in 2012 and 2013. The study was led by Dr. Aoife McKeating, Research Fellow of the UCD Centre for Human Reproduction, Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital.  For further information please contact Dr. McKeating at aoifemckeating@gmail.com

May 2014 A research summary highlighting key findings from HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme (CPP) research with young migrant and minority ethnic women on sexuality, fertility and motherhood is now available.

The research summary draws on two studies in particular; Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme Report No. 25 Attitude toFertility, Sexual Health and Motherhood amongst a sample of Non-Irish National Minority Ethnic Women Living in Ireland and Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme Report No. 24, The Irish Contraception and Crisis Pregnancy Study – 2010. These findings can help young migrant women, their families, and those who work with them in community, education and health settings understand what it is like to be a young migrant women living in Ireland.

Download the research summary Research with Young Migrant Women on Sex, Fertility and Motherhood

January 2014 The HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme is very pleased to announce that a team led by Dr Gerard Molloy, School of Psychology, National University of Ireland, Galway has successfully been awarded the Irish Research Council/ HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme’s Research Grant as part of the 2013 scheme. Dr Molloy and a team of researchers from NUI Galway and the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland aim to examine the ‘barriers and facilitators to the adherence and uptake of hormonal and long acting reversible contraceptives in Ireland’. The team plans to carry out secondary analysis of the ICCP-2010 dataset and gather new qualitative data via interviews with GPs, Pharmacists and contraceptive users. This is the first study of its kind in Ireland. It is envisaged the information generated from this work will be very useful in addressing some of the key objectives of the Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme’s strategic plan relating to uptake and use of contraception. The study was initiated in December 2013 and will be progressed for a period of fifteen months.

December 2013 The HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme has  commissioned research aimed at exploring the factors that inhibit and enable communication between parents and primary school children aged 4-9 years about relationships, sexuality and growing up. Dr. Catherine Conlon and Professor Virpi Timonen from the School of Social Work & Social Policy, Trinity College Dublin, will initiate the research in 2014. The outputs from the project will inform the Programme and its partners on how best to further support parents in the delivery of relationships and sexuality education.

1st August 2013 The Irish Research Council’s ‘Government of Ireland Research Projects Grant Scheme’ for 2013 is now open. As in previous years, as part of this scheme, the Programme is partnering with the Irish Research Council to fund research directly relating to the mandates of the Programme that will result in new insights on key issues. For further information and the terms and conditions, please see link

2nd July 2013 The HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme is seeking to commission a new research project: Exploring the factors that inhibit and enable communication between parents and primary school children aged 4-9 years about relationships, sexuality and growing up.

For further details of the project’s requirements and the procurement process, please access the e-tenders website at  http://www.etenders.gov.ie/ Please be aware that any further correspondence with regard to this process must be carried out via e-tenders.

10th January 2013  The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) held a sexual health research seminar ‘Sex in Ireland: Recent Research and Policy Implications’ on the 10th of January 2013. The seminar presented  new analyses from nationally representative data on sexual health, collected between 2003 and 2010. The research team presented findings in relation to early heterosexual intercourse; parental involvement in sexuality education; crisis pregnancy and sexual health screening in Ireland. An important finding from the research was the key role that relationships and sexuality education plays in increasing the likelihood of using contraception at first sex and reducing the likelihood of experiencing a crisis pregnancy later in life. Policy briefs to inform policy and practice in the area are being developed by the research team.  The research project was funded by the Irish Research Council and the HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme. For information on the Seminar programme download the Sexual Health Seminar 2013 – Programme

5th December 2012 The Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme, in conjunction with the Irish Research Council, is very pleased to have awarded Dr. Saoirse Nic Gabhainn, Health Promotion Unit, National University of Ireland, Galway, with a Government of Ireland Collaborative Research Projects in the Humanities and Social Sciences award, to carry out Adolescent Sexual Health Behaviour in Ireland: Data, Dissemination and Development. This project sets out to systematically analyse sexual health behaviour data collected in the 2010 Irish Health Behaviours in School-aged Children (HBSC) study, which represents the first nationally representative and internationally comparable adolescent data in Ireland. The research will comprise a series of data analyses, will make analytical comparisons with other national studies of sexual health and will replicate international findings using Irish data.

25th October 2012 New Research Summary on Teenage Sexuality – this research summary was developed in an easy-to-read format to help parents and those who work with young people understand more about how young people in Ireland feel about sexuality and relationships, including what it is like to be a teenager growing up in Ireland today, how young people learn about sex and relationships and what influences young people’s sexual behaviour and learning. It also describes how parents approach sexuality education with their children.

5th September 2012 New Research Exploring Adolescent Males’ Attitudes in Relation to an Unintended Pregnancy, commissioned as part of HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme’s Research Awards Scheme, strengthens our understanding of adolescent males’ attitudes and decision-making in relation to an unintended pregnancy. The findings provide an insight into how adolescent men think they would cope if an unintended pregnancy was to happen to them.  The research was carried out by a team from the School of Nursing and Midwifery, Queen’s University Belfast, led by Dr. Maria Lohan, in collaboration with UCD.  To gather the information, the research team produced a short film drama, presenting a week in the life of a teenager whose girlfriend becomes unexpectedly pregnant. The film was presented to male students in post-primary schools, who were asked to answer a series of role-play questions designed to explore their own views and responses as if an unintended pregnancy was happening in their lives. 

29th May 2012Report on  migrant women’s attitudes toward fertility, motherhood and sexual health services in Ireland report launched as part of the Sexual Health Awareness Week (SHAW) organised by the Royal College of Physicians in Ireland. The study – Attitudes to Fertility, Sexual Health and Motherhood amongst a Sample of Non-Irish National Minority Ethnic Women Living in Ireland – focuses on four communities within the overall migrant and minority ethnic community in Ireland – Chinese, Nigerian, Polish and Muslim. Eighty-one women aged between eighteen and thirty years were interviewed on their experiences, views and needs in relation to sexual and reproductive health. The study was led by Dr. Catherine Conlon from Trinity College Dublin.

15th May 2012 – the Department of Health has launched consultation papers for developing the public health policy framework. Closing date for submissions is June 1st.
http://www.dohc.ie/consultations/open/yourhealth/

10th May 2012 –Irish Contraception and Crisis Pregnancy Study 2010 launched. The newly released survey on contraception, sexual health and crisis pregnancy shows improvements in sex education and contraceptive use among young people. This nationally representative study questioned 3002 people living in Ireland in 2010 on a range of topics including contraception, sex education, crisis pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs). The work was carried out by the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI). The findings of this survey can be compared to the findings of the first Irish Contraception and Crisis Pregnancy survey, conducted in 2003 to chart changes in knowledge and sexual behaviour over a seven year period.
You can order or download a copy of ICCP 2010 here. You can also view or order ICCP 2003 by clicking here.

For a full list of Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme research reports click here.

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