Sexually active students' willingness to use school-based health centers for reproductives health care services in North Carolina

Academic Article


  • Objective. - School-based health centers (SBHCs) in North Carolina offer limited reproductive health care services. We investigate sexually active students' willingness to seek these services at SBHCs if available and predictors of willingness to seek services. Methods. - Cross-sectional survey of 949 sexually experienced students in 2 middle and 5 high schools in North Carolina in 1994. Bivariate and multivariate analyses tested the influence of sociodemographic characteristics, risk of pregnancy/sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and past health care utilization on willingness to use SBHCs for sexuality-related services. Results. - Participants were 52% female, 52% black, and median age at first coitus was 13.0 years. Many (49%) had sex at least once a month. Most (52%) reported inconsistent contraception use. One-fifth (18%) of females had been pregnant; 10% of males reported getting a partner pregnant. Seventy-five percent had used SBHCs. Most reported they would use SBHCs for information to protect against pregnancy and STIs (58%), pregnancy testing (51%), and birth control (48%) if available. Females were more likely than males to report they would use these services (adjusted odds ratio = 3.4, 95% confidence interval = 1.9-6.7), especially those receiving free lunch (adjusted odds ratio = 2.9, 95% confidence interval = 1.2-6.8]) and those with inconsistent use of contraception. We found no association between past health care and willingness to use SBHC services. Conclusions. - Most sexually experienced students report they would use their SBHC for reproductive/STI services if they were available. Absence of these services in SBHCs represents a missed opportunity to provide health care to adolescents who are at substantial risk of pregnancy and STIs.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 7380339
  • Author List

  • Coyne-Beasley T; Ford CA; Waller MW; Adimora AA; Resnick MD
  • Start Page

  • 196
  • End Page

  • 202
  • Volume

  • 3
  • Issue

  • 4