ABSTRACT: A community-based intervention, Focus-on-Kids (FOK) has demonstrated risk-behaviour reduction of urban youth. We modified FOK to Focus-on-Teens (FOT) for high schools. High school adolescents (n=1190) were enrolled over successive school semesters. The small-group sessions were presented during the school-lunch hours. Confidential surveys were conducted at baseline, immediate, six-, and 12-month postintervention for demographics, parental communication/monitoring, sexual risk behaviours and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)/HIV/condom-usage knowledge. Sexually active participants were encouraged to volunteer for urine-based STDs testing at the School-Based Health Centres. Many (47.4%) students reported having had sexual intercourse at baseline. Overall behaviours changed towards 'safer' sex behaviours (intent-to-use and using condoms, communicating with partner/parents about sex/condoms/STDs) with time (P<0.05). Proportion of students with complete correct knowledge of STDs/HIV increased to 88% at time 4 from 80% at baseline after adjusting for age, gender and sexual activity (P<0.05). High prevalence of STDs was detected in 875 participants who reported for urine testing at time 1: trichomonas, 11.8%; chlamydia, 10.1% and gonorrhoea, 4.1%. Prevalence decreased significantly for 310 participants who re-tested; chlamydia: 27.4% to 6.1% and gonorrhoea: 11.3% to 3.2%. FOT was successfully implemented as an STDs/HIV risk-reduction intervention. Sustained improvements of knowledge about STDs/HIV/condom usage, decreases in sexual risk behaviours supported the effectiveness of this intervention.
International Journal of STD & AIDS 11/2008; 19(10):704-10. · 1.09 Impact Factor