The number of under-16s being infected with STIs in the Lothians is 50 per cent higher than could be expected, with children as young as 12 being diagnosed with chlamydia.
Despite only covering two-thirds of the population seen by NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, between 2010 and 2012 NHS Lothian averaged 104 cases of chlamydia diagnosed in children aged 12-15 each year, compared with an average of 100 in NHS GGC.
Overall, around one quarter of the 400 children diagnosed with chlamydia, gonorrhoea and syphilis every year were in the NHS Lothian area.
Most of those patients were aged 15, with around a quarter aged 14. Specific numbers of 12 and 13 year olds were withheld.
The Scottish Government have come under fire from the Conservative Party after their response to the figures laid the responsibility for providing sex education at the door of local councils.
Conservative Health spokesman, Jackson Carlaw, said the response sounded “like a rather casual dismissal of a serious and increasing problem”.
He said: “This is a public health issue and it should be the Public Health Minister’s priority to provide leadership.