Doctors’ criminal law duty to report consensual sexual activity between adolescents: legal and clinical issues

Ben Mathews and Lena A Sanci
Med J Aust 2021; 215 (3): . || doi: 10.5694/mja2.51163
Published online: 19 July 2021

Laws requiring doctors to report consensual adolescent sexual activity present legal, clinical and ethical problems

Many Australian teenagers engage in consensual sexual intercourse with similar aged peers.1 They require confidential medical care, including contraception and sexually transmitted infection testing. However, adolescents’ rights to access medical care may confront legal barriers.

  • Ben Mathews1,2
  • Lena A Sanci3

  • 1 Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, QLD
  • 2 Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, USA
  • 3 University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC


Competing interests:

No relevant disclosures.


remove_circle_outline Delete Author
add_circle_outline Add Author

Do you have any competing interests to declare? *

I/we agree to assign copyright to the Medical Journal of Australia and agree to the Conditions of publication *
I/we agree to the Terms of use of the Medical Journal of Australia *
Email me when people comment on this article

Online responses are no longer available. Please refer to our instructions for authors page for more information.