Departmental Papers (ASC)

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Journal Article

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American Journal of Public Health





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Objectives. We evaluated the effectiveness of an intervention designed to increase preventive health care seeking among adolescents.

Methods. Adolescents and young adults aged 12 to 21 years, recruited from community-based organizations in 2 different communities, were randomized into either a 3-session intervention or a control condition. We estimated outcomes from 3-month follow-up data using logistic and ordinary least squares regression.

Results. Female intervention participants were significantly more likely than female control participants to have scheduled a health care appointment (odds ratio [OR]=3.04), undergone a checkup (OR=2.87), and discussed with friends or family members the importance of undergoing a checkup (OR=4.5). There were no differences between male intervention and male control participants in terms of outcomes.

Conclusions. This theory-driven, community-based group intervention significantly increased preventive health care seeking among female adolescents. Further research is needed, however, to identify interventions that will produce successful outcomes among male adolescents.

Copyright/Permission Statement

VanDevanter N, Messeri P, Middlestadt S, Bleakley A, Merzel C, Hogben M, Ledsky R, Malotte C, Cohall R, St. Lawrence J. Community-based intervention to increase preventive health care seeking in adolescents: The Gonorrhea Community Action Project. American Journal of Public Health; 95(2): 331-337; 2005; American Public Health Association.

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Copyright for this article is held and maintained by the American Public Health Association, and permission is still required for any use by third-party individuals or organizations.


At the time of publication, author Amy Bleakley was affiliated with the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University. Currently, she is a faculty member at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania.

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Date Posted: 14 June 2019

This document has been peer reviewed.