Primary abstinence

Export Indicator

Percentage of young women and men aged 15-19 who never had sex
What it measures

This indicator provides information on important aspects of sexual behavior. It describes the proportion of young people surveyed who never had sex, thus the prevalence of virginity among young people. Looking at this prevalence within narrow age ranges (15-16, 17-19, for example, or ideally, by single ages) across time allows program managers to see if the age at first sex is changing.


Number of young women and men aged 15-19 who never had sex


Number of young women and men aged 15-19 surveyed

Method of measurement

Respondents (15-19 year olds) are asked if they have ever had sex. The indicator should be reported separately for men and women. If the indicator is calculated for groups of ages larger than the period of change in abstinence, the indicator will not reflect changes e.g. change in abstinence among 15-19 year old, will not reflect change over a 2-3 year period. It is therefore recommended that this indicator be reported by single age.

Measurement frequency

Every 2-3 years


Education: N/A

Gender: Male, Female

Geographic location: N/A

Pregnancy status: N/A

Sector: N/A

Target: N/A

Time period: N/A

Type of orphan: N/A

Vulnerability status: N/A

Explanation of the numerator
Explanation of the denominator
Strengths and weaknesses
Further information