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Young peoples use and views of a school-based sexual health drop-in service in areas of high deprivation

Ingram, Jenny; Salmon, Debra


Jenny Ingram

Debra Salmon


Objective: To describe patterns and reasons of attendance and young peoples views of the drop-in service. Design: Analysis of a prospective database, questionnaire survey and qualitative interviews and discussions. Setting: Sexual health drop-in clinics in 16 secondary schools (including three pupil-referral units) in deprived areas of a city in South West England Methods: Nurse-completed consultations with young people; self-report questionnaires distributed by youth workers at the clinics; and interviews with young people in personal, social and health education (PSHE) lessons and at lunchtimes. Results: 515 young people made 1,303 visits over 15 months for nurse consultations (mean age 14.7 years). The mean age of first sex was 13.8 years (range 10 to 16 years). The service attracted hard-to-reach young people, including boys, those less academically able, and those engaging in sexual intercourse at younger ages. A wide range of services were taken up including contraception, emergency contraception, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) testing and treatment, pregnancy tests, and referral to other services. Young people reported high levels of satisfaction with staff attitudes and clinic environment. Youth workers saw a younger age group than nurses, giving advice prior to sexual activity, about relationships, safer sex and delaying sex. Barriers to use included: worries about embarrassment, cultural issues, and confidentiality. Conclusions: Locating sexual health drop-in clinics in schools within deprived communities makes them accessible to many vulnerable young people. Those having sex early attended, often before they had sex, and a large number of boys came for advice and condoms. © 2010 The Author(s).


Ingram, J., & Salmon, D. (2010). Young peoples use and views of a school-based sexual health drop-in service in areas of high deprivation. Health Education Journal, 69(3), 227-235.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Sep 1, 2010
Deposit Date Dec 15, 2010
Journal Health Education Journal
Print ISSN 0017-8969
Electronic ISSN 1748-8176
Publisher SAGE Publications
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 69
Issue 3
Pages 227-235
Keywords deprivation, young people, youth workers, sexual health, nurses
Public URL
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