Date of Award

January 2013

Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)

Department

School of Public Health

First Advisor

Linda Niccolai

Second Advisor

Nathan Hansen

Abstract

Abstract

Background: There are more than 5.8 million adolescents (10-19 year olds) in Peru. Their sexual debut is between 14 and 17 years old. Despite efforts to increase sexuality-related knowledge within this population, condom and contraceptive use is low.

Problem: Knowledge is important; but there are many other factors also influencing adolescent behavior. Parent-child communication has been found to be an important factor influencing adolescent sexual and reproductive health (ASRH) outcomes in Lima. However, little is known about ASRH in the rural Andean regions of Peru and parental attitudes and factors of influence.

Methods: Six focus groups were carried out with mothers and fathers from Unuraqui, Pampallaqta, Accha Baja, and Llanchu. Focus groups took place in both Spanish and Quechua languages. Sessions were recorded, transcribed in Spanish, and coded for main themes.

Findings: Parent-child interactions and communication were associated with several ASRH outcomes. Possible protective and risk factors for adolescent sexual behaviors were identified for each theme. Some may directly influence adolescent behavior, and other factors may influence their environment.

Implications: Parent influence should be taken into consideration for program and policy development, especially in the Andean communities in rural Peru

Comments

This is an Open Access Thesis.

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