Self-Efficacy for Sexual Risk Reduction and Partner HIV Status as Correlates of Sexual Risk Behavior Among HIV-Positive Adolescent Girls and Women

AIDS Patient Care STDS. 2015 Jun;29(6):346-53. doi: 10.1089/apc.2014.0175. Epub 2015 Apr 9.


Little is known about the correlates of sexual risk behavior among HIV-positive adolescent girls and women in the United States. This study investigates two potential factors related to unprotected vaginal and anal intercourse (UVAI) that have yet to be thoroughly studied in this group: self-efficacy for sexual risk reduction and partner HIV status. Data was analyzed from 331 HIV-positive adolescent girls and women between 12 and 24 years old who reported vaginal and/or anal intercourse with a male partner in the past 3 months at fifteen sites across the United States. Results show that overall self-efficacy (B=-0.15, p=0.01), self-efficacy to discuss safe sex with one's partner (B=-0.14, p=0.01), and self-efficacy to refuse unsafe sex (B=-0.21, p=0.01) are related to UVAI episodes. Participants with only HIV-positive partners or with both HIV-positive and HIV-negative partners showed a trend towards higher percentages of UVAI episodes compared to participants with only HIV-negative partners (F(2, 319)=2.80, p=0.06). These findings point to the importance of including self-efficacy and partner HIV status in risk-reduction research and interventions developed for HIV-positive adolescent girls and young women.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / prevention & control
  • HIV Infections / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Risk Reduction Behavior*
  • Risk-Taking
  • Self Efficacy*
  • Sexual Behavior
  • Sexual Partners*
  • United States
  • Unsafe Sex / statistics & numerical data*
  • Young Adult