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Article
April 1997

Residents' Self-assessed Skills in Providing Sexuality-Related Care to Teenagers

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Pediatrics, The Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions (Drs Wilson and Joffe); and the Department of Epidemiology, The Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health (Dr Manoff), Baltimore, Md.

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1997;151(4):418-422. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1997.02170410092013
Abstract

Objectives:  To assess pediatric residents' self-reported skills and satisfaction with providing sexuality-related health care to teenagers and to examine differences by resident and patient gender.

Design:  Cross-sectional survey.

Participants:  Forty second-year (PGY2) and 17 third-year (PGY3) pediatric residents at one training program who completed a self-administered questionnaire.

Main Outcome Measures:  Residents rated their skills with taking a history from, performing a physical examination on, developing a diagnosis for, and counseling both male and female teenagers. Skills with providing health care to male and female teenagers were assessed separately. Scales were constructed for skills with performing a physical examination and providing a diagnosis and counseling. Residents also rated their satisfaction with providing health care to male and female teenagers. Skills and satisfaction with providing health care to male vs female teenagers were analyzed.

Results:  Female residents rated their skills with providing health care to male teenagers significantly lower than their skills with providing health care to female teenagers as follows: taking a history of pubertal development (PGY2, P=.001; PGY3, P=.02), taking a sexual history (PGY2, P=.004), asking about sexual preference (PGY2, P=.02), examination and diagnosis scale (PGY2, P<.001; PGY3, P=.008), and counseling scale (PGY2, P=.003). For male residents, there were no significant differences in skills with providing health care to male vs female teenagers. Second-year, but not third-year, female residents reported significantly lower (P<.005) satisfaction with providing health care to male vs female teenagers.

Conclusions:  Among female residents, discrepancies were found when comparing self-assessed competencies and, for PGY2 residents, level of satisfaction with providing health care to male vs female patients. If other research confirms these findings, educational interventions related to sexuality-related health care for teenagers should be designed with consideration to gender-specific learner needs.Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1997;151:418-422

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