257415 Self-Reported Attitudes and Beliefs as Contributors to Engagement in Risky Sexual Behaviors Among Minority Adolescents

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Colleen Andreoni, DNP, FNP-BC, ANP-BC, CEN , Niehoff School of Nursing, Loyola University Chicago, Maywood, IL
Gina Coffee, PhD , School of Education, Loyola University Chicago, Chicago, IL
Eva Kowalewicz, MEd , School of Education, Loyola University Chicago, Chicago, IL
The objective was to explore attitudes and beliefs identified by middle school adolescents, parents, and community adults which may contribute to adolescent sex-risk behaviors in high school. A qualitative study of the responses of African American adolescents (10-14), parents, and community adults to structured focus group questions related to attitudes, beliefs, and intentions toward adolescent sexual behavior and decision making was conducted over one year with nine focus groups (N=38). Researchers used a modified version of Consensual Qualitative Research technique. The interprofessional research team arrived at a consensus judgment which was audited by another team member. Data was coded into domains and core ideas were extracted. The data was systematically compared across cases. Both principals and the research assistant developed the final themes. Preliminary results were obtained in the adolescent and the parent/adult populations, these include: perceived norms; planning and protection; reasons why adolescents engage in sexual activity; perceived consequences, knowledge of access to contraception; perceived control/influence of others in adolescent's decision to engage in sexual activity. Preliminary themes include individual control, parental measures to protect, parental barriers, and the influence and importance of community and society. Complete data analysis of the final focus groups is nearing completion and the results will be presented. The knowledge of attitudes and beliefs related to adolescent sexual activity within a minority community will determine the most effective intervention programs to decrease adolescent sex-risk behaviors. Public health nurses and staff must consider the individual community's beliefs before implementing intervention programs to ensure successful outcomes.

Learning Areas:
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Diversity and culture
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Upon completion of this presentation the participant will be able to 1. Describe the significance of sex risk behaviors in minority adolescents. 2. Identify adolescents' (10-14) attitudes, perceived norms, and perceived control over sexual behaviors. 3. Identify adult attitudes toward adolescent sexual behavior, perceived norms in their social group, and perceived control/influence over adolescent sexual behaviors.

Keywords: Adolescents, Sexual Risk Behavior

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the co-principal of a longitudinal study examining the identification of adolescent sex-risk behaviors and appropriate interventions. I am an assistant professor at a major university school of nursing, responsible for the instruction of advanced practice nurses. I am also the nurse practitioner at a high school based health center in an underserved community. My professional research and clinical interests include reducing the risks for teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections.
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.