The Perfect Storm: Perceptions of Influencing Adults Regarding Latino Teen Pregnancy in Rural Communities.

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DOI: 10.1007/s10995-023-03627-2


INTRODUCTION: Recognition of the importance of adolescents' environments in influencing their sexual and reproductive health (SRH) decision-making necessitates a deeper understanding of the role that community stakeholders play in shaping Adolescent and Young Adults (AYA) access to SRH education and care. We describe community stakeholders' knowledge, beliefs, and attitudes about AYA's SRH needs in three rural Latino communities in Kansas.

METHODS: Key stakeholders completed a written survey incorporating the theory of Planned Behavior to assess attitudes, norms, and intentions to support AYA's SRH education and access to care.

RESULTS: Across three rural immigrant community settings, respondents (N = 55) included 8 community health workers, 9 health care providers, 7 public health officials, 19 school health officials, and 12 community members. More than half self-identified as Latino (55%). Six (11%) participants, half of whom were in the health sector, thought SRH education would increase the likelihood that teens would engage in sexual activities. In contrast, other stakeholders thought that providing condoms (17, 30.9%), contraception other than condoms (14, 25.5%), and providing HPV immunization (5, 9.6%) would increase the likelihood of engaging in sexual activity. Ambivalence regarding support for SRH education and service provision prevailed across sectors, reflected even in the endorsement of the distribution of less effective contraceptive methods. Obstacles to care include immigration status, discrimination, lack of confidential services, and transportation.

CONCLUSION: Key stakeholders living in rural communities revealed misconceptions, negative attitudes, and ambivalent beliefs related to the delivery of SRH education and services, potentially creating barriers to AYA's successful access to care.

Journal Title

Maternal and child health journal





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MeSH Keywords

Pregnancy; Female; Adolescent; Young Adult; Humans; Rural Population; Pregnancy in Adolescence; Contraception; Sex Education; Sexual Behavior; Reproductive Health; Reproductive Health Services; Hispanic or Latino


Adolescents; Community Stakeholders; Latinx; Reproductive health; Rural.

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