From the Department of Health Behavior, University of Alabama, Birmingham. Dr DiClemente is now with the Department of Behavioral Science and Health Education, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, Atlanta, Ga.
The risk of acquiring a sexually transmitted infection (STI), including
the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), is one of the most significant threats
to the health of adolescents.1,2
In response to heightened concern about high rates of STIs and the threat
of HIV among adolescents, the development and implementation of programs designed
to prevent STI/HIV-associated sexual risk behaviors is a public health priority.
While there is increasing consensus regarding the urgency of intervening to
prevent STI/HIV-associated sexual risk behaviors, there is considerable controversy
as to the most effective intervention approach to use. Safer-sex approaches
address abstinence but emphasize information and training in safer-sex skills
and behaviors. Abstinence interventions exclusively emphasize values, attitudes,
and skills for postponing sexual intercourse.
DiClemente RJ. Preventing Sexually Transmitted Infections Among AdolescentsA Clash of Ideology and Science. JAMA. 1998;279(19):1574-1575. doi:10.1001/jama.279.19.1574