Sexual health promotion in high social risk adolescents: the view of ‘professionals’
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Teenage pregnancy rates and STIs have lately risen all over Europe. In Catalonia, figures have started to improve slightly because of a joint effort by all health and social agents involved in promoting healthy habits. Effective intervention must be accompanied by scientifically proven actions which must be present in educational curricula and in health plans and must also require family involvement. Our qualitative study aimed at exploring programmes and experiences targeted at young people as well as analyzing innovative proposals which would address teenagers’ needs; it also aimed at understanding weaknesses and strengths identified by professionals who work with vulnerable youths. We used 6 focus groups: 2 involved with immigrants, 2 from deprived areas and 2 from youth care homes with a total of 48 participants. They all stated the importance of combining initiatives within educational, community and health contexts. They also deemed necessary to come up with new organizational strategies which would facilitate coordination of services and resources available as well as the necessity to devise a common curriculum. They also believe in implementing more motivating and innovative strategies to attract teenagers and in the necessity for monitoring programmes in order to increase their effectiveness particularly those programmes aimed at youths who can’t access health or educational services.