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Adolescent Pride Festival Attendees—Assessing Their Interactions With Primary Care Physicians

      Abstract

      Purpose

      Pride festivals celebrate the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) community. This study aimed to describe adolescent Pride festival attendees, determine rates of accessing health care via their primary care physician (PCP), and assess if providers are discussing sex and offering screening for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) to these adolescents.

      Methods

      Adolescents, aged 13–17 years, attending the 2017 Minnesota Pride Festival were invited to complete an 18-question survey regarding gender identity, sexual orientation, access to a physician the preceding year, and whether sexual activity was discussed and/or STI screening provided at these encounters.

      Results

      A total of 490 surveys were evaluated. Sixty-nine percent of respondents identified as having nonheterosexual orientation. Rural participants were significantly more likely to identify as LGBT than urban or suburban participants. The majority (90%) of adolescents had been seen in the past year by a physician. Of these, 68% had been asked a sexual history, and 29% were offered STI testing. Older adolescents were more likely to be asked about sex and offered STI testing by a physician. Identifying as LGBT was not associated with rate of sexual history taken or STI screening offered but was associated with perceived need for STI testing.

      Conclusions

      LGBT youth attending Minnesota Pride are accessing a PCP with the same regularity as cisgender, heterosexual peers but are infrequently offered STI testing, despite knowledge of increased STI rates in this population. Taking a sexual history and screening for STIs is something all physicians can do and represents an important first step in any STI reduction initiative.

      Keywords

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      Linked Article

      • Commemorating Pride: Reflecting on Progress and Continuing to Advocate for Gender Diverse and Sexual Minority Youth
        Journal of Adolescent HealthVol. 66Issue 6
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          Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer or questioning (LGBTQ) Pride Month is marked with parades, demonstrations, workshops, and other events to recognize the local and global impact of LGBTQ individuals. This month also reminds us to honor those within the LGBTQ community who we have lost and reflect on our past and present struggles for human rights. Our history is rich in examples of how the LGBTQ community has fought for these rights: Compton Cafeteria Riots in San Francisco, Stonewall Riots in New York, demonstrations by the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power to prompt governmental response for the AIDS epidemic, and the fight for same-sex marriage.
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