152275 Successful strategies to improve intergenerational sexual health communication among Hispanics

Tuesday, November 6, 2007: 8:45 AM

Patricia M. Thickstun, PhD , Science Dept, Medical Institute for Sexual Health, Austin, TX
Sheetal Malhotra, MBBS, MS , Science Dept, Medical Institute for Sexual Health, Austin, TX
Katherine Hendricks, MD, MPH , Science Dept, Medical Institute for Sexual Health, Austin, TX
Background: El Paso County, with ~232,000 households, has 725,000 residents, 44% of whom are <24 yo. Approximately 28,000 grandparents reside with grandchildren <18 yo; half provide care for their grandchildren. 76% of El Paso residents speak Spanish at home. 17% of El Paso middle school YRBS participants have had sex, 30% before age 12. In the city of El Paso, 66% of births to teen mothers are nonmarital, >90% are to Hispanic teens, and 25% are repeat births. El Paso County has the highest cervical cancer rate in Texas, a state with the 5th highest rate in the US. El Paso HIV/AIDS rates are highest among 20- to 24-year-olds.

Methods: A Spanish language sexual health curriculum was provided to parenting adults (grandparents and parents). Participants received 8 hours of training on sexually transmitted infections (STIs), nonmarital pregnancy (NMP), contraception, effective parent-child communication, and decision making.

Purpose: The curriculum objectives were to 1) increase parenting adult knowledge of STIs and NMP and 2) improve parenting adult-child communication on sexual health issues.

Results: 101/103 participants aged 26-73 years completed pre- and post-tests on sexual health knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors. 73% had at least one grandchild attending middle or high school. Post-tests revealed significant increases in knowledge of NMP, STIs, and their consequences. There were significant increases in reported comfort discussing STIs with grandchildren and frequency of communication with peers and children on sexual health issues.

Conclusion: Parenting adults demonstrated increased knowledge of and communication on sexual health issues with peers and children.

Learning Objectives:
1.Describe one strategy that encourages sexual health communication with peers and children. 2.Identify one element of this program that could be applied to their health education or promotion program

Keywords: Hispanic, Health Communications

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Any relevant financial relationships? No
Any institutionally-contracted trials related to this submission?

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.