Impact of an Integrated Adolescent Reproductive Health Program in Brazil

Authors

  • Robert J. Magnani,

    1. Robert J. Magnani is Professor, Tulane University Health Sciences Center, School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine, Department of International Health & Development, 1440 Canal Street, Suite 2200, New Orleans, Louisiana 70112. E-mail: magnani@tulane.edu.
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  • Lynne Gaffikin,

    1. Lynne Gaffikin is Adjunct Associate Professor, Tulane University Health Sciences Center, School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine, Department of International Health & Development, 1440 Canal Street, Suite 2200, New Orleans, Louisiana 70112.
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  • Estela Maria Leão de Aquino,

    1. Eric E. Seiber is Research Assistant Professor, Tulane University Health Sciences Center, School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine, Department of International Health & Development, 1440 Canal Street, Suite 2200, New Orleans, Louisiana 70112.
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  • Eric E. Seiber,

    1. Eric E. Seiber is Research Assistant Professor, Tulane University Health Sciences Center, School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine, Department of International Health & Development, 1440 Canal Street, Suite 2200, New Orleans, Louisiana 70112.
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  • Maria de Conceição Chagas Almeida,

    1. Estela Maria Leao de Aquino is Professor, Federal University of Bahia, Institute of Community Health, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil.
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  • Varja Lipovsek

    1. Varja Lipovsek is a doctoral candidate, Tulane University Health Sciences Center, School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine, Department of International Health & Development, 1440 Canal Street, Suite 2200, New Orleans, Louisiana 70112.
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Abstract

An impact evaluation of an integrated school- and health-clinic-based adolescent reproductive health initiative was undertaken by the State Secretariats of Health and Education in Bahia, Brazil during 1997–99. The project was initiated in response to continued high pregnancy rates among adolescents and growing numbers of new HIV infections among young adults. It sought to promote responsible sexual and health-seeking behaviors among public secondary-school students, including the use of public health clinics. The study design included a matched control group used to measure project impact. The findings indicate that the project was successful in increasing the flow of sexual and reproductive health information to secondary-school students and that it had an impact on adolescents' intentions to use public health clinics in the future. No effects on sexual or contraceptive-use behaviors or on use of public clinics were observed, however. Client exit-interview data from a subset of project clinics indicate that adolescents who use clinic-based services are overwhelmingly female and considerably older on average and much more likely ever to have been pregnant than are adolescents in the target population for the project.

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