241309 Long-term retention of information and skills in parent-child sexual health communication among Hispanics

Wednesday, November 2, 2011: 1:30 PM

Sheetal Malhotra, MBBS, MS , Public Health Programs, Medical Institute for Sexual Health, Austin, TX
Diane M. Santa Maria, MSN APRN-BC , School of Public Health, University of Texas -- Houston, Pearland, TX
Katherine Hendricks, MD, MPH&TM , Public Health, Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Huntsville, TX
Background: Parents are important influences in the adolescent sexual decision-making. Even though several programs aim to educate parents on sexual health communication with their children, there is not much information on retention and continued parent-child communication on sexual health issues. Furthermore, cultural barriers in Hispanics deter continued parent-child communication on sex. Methods: A Spanish-language curriculum, Construyendo Familias Unidas, showed improved knowledge and skills in Hispanic parents in border communities. Follow up data were obtained 12-24 months after the completion of curriculum classes to assess retention of knowledge and skills as well as communication frequency and behaviors.

Objectives: The follow up assessment objectives were to 1) test retention of parent knowledge of risk factors for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and teen pregnancy and 2) assess frequency and behaviors of parenting adult-child communication on sexual health issues.

Results: 174 of 263 (66%) parenting adults responded to follow-up phone surveys 12-24 months after completion of parent classes. Participant sexual health knowledge, attitudes, as well as communication behaviors with their children were assessed. Follow up data revealed significant retention of knowledge of risk factors for teen pregnancy (>80%) and STIs (>90%), as well as dating violence (85%). A majority of parents reported continued comfort (>94%) discussing sexual health issues with their children. Over half of the participants also reported frequent (once a week or more) communication on sexual health topics.

Conclusion: Parents receiving Construyendo Familias Unidas curriculum continue to maintain a high level of knowledge and skills regarding parent-child communication on sexual health issues.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe strategies to encourage continued parent-child sexual health communication 2. Discuss long term effectiveness of a parent curriculum on parent-child sexual health communication

Keywords: Public Health Education and Health Promotion, Hispanic

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have planned, implemented and evaluated the program as the principal investigator.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

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.