In Iran, it is crucial that special attention be paid to reproductive health services for adolescents, especially for girls.

Researchers did this study to explore the views and experiences of adolescent girls and key adults around the barriers to access of Iranian adolescent girls to SRH information and services.

In this qualitative study, data were gathered through focus groups and semi-structured interviews with 247 adolescent girls and 71 key adults including mothers, teachers, health providers, governmental, nongovernmental and international managers of health programmes, health policymakers, sociologists and clergy in four Iranian cities. Data were coded and categorised using content analysis.

The main barriers identified were social and cultural barriers such as taboos; structural and administrative barriers such as inappropriate structure of the health system; political barriers such as lack of an adopted strategy by the government and non-use of religious potential.

The study concluded that adolescent SRH in Iran should be firmly established as a priority for government leaders and policymakers. They should try to provide those services that are consistent with the community’s cultural and religious values for adolescent girls.