Enhancing Resource Utilization Among Pregnant Adolescents


Linda Flynn, Rutgers College of Nursing, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, 75 Halsey Street, Newark, NJ 07102. E-mail: lflynn@rutgers.edu


ABSTRACT Objective: The purpose of this study was to test the impact of a home visitation intervention on resource utilization and birth outcomes among pregnant adolescents.

Design: This study used a quasiexperimental design that included repeated measures and a comparison group to evaluate the intervention.

Sample: The intervention sample consisted of 83 low-income, pregnant adolescents. The comparison sample was constructed from 216 deidentified electronic birth certificate records.

Measurement and Intervention: Each month, during their prenatal period, participating teens received 1 home visit by a public health-registered nurse and 1 home visit by a medical social worker for the purpose of assisting teens to access community resources, select a prenatal care provider, and make and schedule appointments. Health education and transportation to medical appointments were also provided.

Results: There were significant increases in resource utilization, including prenatal care appointments, among intervention teens during program participation. Intervention teens made significantly more visits to their prenatal care providers than did comparison group teens. There were no significant differences, however, in mean infant birth weight between the 2 groups.

Conclusions: The findings indicate that the intervention may be effective in enhancing resource utilization among pregnant adolescents.