A first draft of a long-anticipated sexual health policy for Malta had to be scrapped and redone because it was based on outdated information, according to Health Minister Chris Fearne.
Last year, Fearne had pledged that Malta’s first and only sexual health policy, which was published 11 years ago, would be completed by March. Seven months down the line, however, there is no sight of the new policy.
During a conference about the national budget for next year, Fearne was asked about a line item earmarking €50,000 for the completion of Malta’s sexual health policy, which it was pointed out to the minister had been promised for years now.
“A first draft was drawn up and was presented to me. However, we noticed there was a problem since the report was based on premises that were 12 years old,” Fearne said. “He said the country’s culture and laws had radically changed since then.”
The minister said he had instructed Public Health to commission a new study that captured Malta’s present-day thoughts and sexual health practices so that decisions taken on sexual health are “based on today’s, and not yesterday’s, facts”.
Fearne said that the new study would be completed by the end of the year with a new policy expected at some point next year.
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