Purpose: To evaluate a valid, reliable self-report health behavior screening instrument, the Safe Times Questionnaire (STQ), in a clinical setting.
Methods: One hundred and fifty-two patients at a primary care health center completed the STQ and were randomized into two groups; physicians in the "STQ group" (79 patients) used the STQ while physicians in the "interview group" (73 patients) were blinded to the STQ. Physicians rated each patient on their need for intervention in nine topic areas. Patients then had a psychological interview and were rated on the same topic areas.
Results: The total time of the patient visit was significantly longer in the interview group than in the STQ group. Physicians in the STQ group had significantly higher accuracy in identification of subjects at risk for depression and family conflict.
Conclusions: The Safe Times Questionnaire is a potentially useful instrument to efficiently screen adolescents.