The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA

4150.0: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 - 1:15 PM

Abstract #43748

American Indian adolescents, addictions, trauma, and HIV risk

Arlene Rubin Stiffman, PhD, Catherine Woodstock Striley, MSW, Eddie Brown, DSW, Gordon Limb, PhD, and Emily Ostmann, BS. Social Work, Washington University, Campus Box 1196, 1 Brookings Drive, St. Louis, MO 63130, 314-935-6685,

There is little published research on HIV and addictions risk behaviors of American Indian (AI) adults, and none on adolescents. AI adults use fewer condoms, more IV drugs, and have higher alcoholism, suicidality, and violence. All are associated with increased HIV risk behaviors. We examine addictions services of 403 American Indian youth, using the Diagnostic Interview Schedule, and the Service Assessment for Children and Adolescents (SACA). AI youth had high rates of all adult AI predictors of HIV risk behavior: 1 in 8 were alcohol dependent/abusing; 1 in 4 were drug dependent/abusing (7% used IV drugs), and exposed to community violence; and 1 in 5 were suicidal, exposed to domestic violence, and sexually abused/raped. As in adult AI and non AI studies, these were related to higher rates of HIV risk behaviors. If alcoholic or drug abusing/dependent, or suicidal, youth were twice as likely to have had sex, and to not use any protection. If exposed to violence, or abused, they were twice as likely to have sex, and to not use condoms. Talking with parents about HIV was associated with more condom use, but not other risk behaviors. Classroom HIV education was unrelated to risk behaviors. Use of teachers, youth leaders, social workers, or physicians for addictions or social risk factors was associated with higher rates of condom use.

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