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April 28, 1999

Abstinence and Safer Sex Among Adolescents

Author Affiliations

Margaret A.WinkerMD, Deputy EditorIndividualAuthorPhil B.FontanarosaMD, Interim CoeditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 1999;281(16):1485-1488. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-281-16-jbk0428

To the Editor: Based on data from the preintervention questionnaire in the study by Dr Jemmott and colleagues,1 25.2% of the 659 student subjects reported that they were nonvirgins and 15.4% had engaged in coitus during the previous 3 months. Three months later, when 647 returned to collect their stipend for participating, only about 80% usefully completed the almost identical questionnaire. Thus, only 112 (21%) of 531 reported coitus in the prior 3 months. The same rate of completing the questionaire occurred in the 6- and 12-month assessments, although just about all the original study subjects returned, presumably to receive their money each time.

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