152300 Behavioral Risk Assessment of Urban Minority Adolescents

Monday, November 5, 2007: 9:20 AM

Diana M. Ingram, PhD, MPH, BSP , College of Nursing (M/C 802), University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Naomi Morris, MD, MPH , School of Public Health (M/C 923), University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Shaffdeen Amuwo, PhD , School of Public Health, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Barbara L. Dancy, PhD , Pma, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Michele A. Kelley, ScD, MA, MSW , Community Health Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Donald R. Hedeker, PhD , Biostatistics and Epidemiology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Linda H. Coles, EdD , Chicago Public Schools, Deputy Director of Academic Affairs - Retired, Chicago, IL
African-American adolescents experience a disproportionate risk of negative sexual health outcomes and tend to initiate sexual intercourse as preadolescents (ages 9-11). The purpose of the study is to examine the health perceptions and behavioral risk intentions of 159 minority adolescents (age 9-15) from two urban elementary schools, using a cross-sectional survey method. Descriptive information obtained from adolescent self-reported behaviors related to sexual activity, pregnancy, condom use, alcohol and drug use (marijuana, cocaine, sniffing glue), drug dealing and delivery, and personal risk for STD and/or HIV infection are assessed. Findings show that the respondents reported intention to use condoms (28%), to have sex (18%), to drink alcohol (14%) and to smoke cigarettes (13%). Compared to females, males were statistically more likely to “sniff glue” and “get a girl pregnant”. Male adolescents were also more likely to report intended risk behaviors than female adolescents. Logistic regression analyses reveal that sexually active youths were six times more likely than others to foresee dealing drugs in the next 6 months, nine times more likely to believe they would contract HIV, and 12 times more likely to foresee sniffing glue. Sexually active adolescents reported that they intended to continue being sexually active. Non-sexually active adolescents reported a future intent to engage in risk behaviors related to sexual activity and drug use. Data supports efforts to develop intervention programs with a focus on behavior risk reduction and to recommend comprehensive sex education programs that include culturally based and consistent content on contraception and abstinence methods.

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify the behavioral risk intentions of minority adolescents; 2. Recognize the need for a culturally based health assessment instrument to obtain self-reported risk behavior information from minority adolescents; and 3. Discuss the components of an intervention program with a focus on behavior risk reduction among urban African American adolescents.

Keywords: Adolescent Health, Risk Behavior

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.