Sexually Transmitted Infection Testing After Brief Intervention for Risk Behaviors in School-Based Health Centers



      The initiation and escalation of substance use and sex behaviors is prevalent during adolescence. School-based health centers (SBHCs) are well-equipped to provide interventions for risky behaviors and offer sexually transmitted infection (STI) testing services. This study examined receipt of STI testing following brief intervention (BI) among sexually active adolescents.


      This is a secondary analysis of data from a randomized trial comparing computer versus nurse practitioner–delivered BI approaches among adolescents (ages 14–18) with risky alcohol and/or cannabis use at two SBHCs within two urban high schools. Associations were examined among receipt of STI testing and participant characteristics, BI format, site, and frequency of substance use/sexual behaviors.


      Among sexually active participants (N = 254), 64.2% received STI testing at their SBHC within 6 months of receiving a BI. Participants receiving nurse practitioner–delivered BI had higher odds of getting STI testing than participants receiving computer-delivered BI (adjusted odds ratio 2.51, 95% confidence interval 1.41–4.47, p = .002). Other variables associated with STI testing in multivariable logistic regression included female sex (p = .001), being in a serious relationship (p = .018), and SBHC site (p < .001). Frequency of substance use and sexual risk behaviors were not independently associated with receipt of STI testing services.


      Sexually active adolescents who received in-person BI from a nurse practitioner were more likely to get STI testing than adolescents who received BI via computer. Nurse practitioners working in SBHCs can successfully engage adolescents in additional sexual health services subsequent to BI for risky behaviors.


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