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Title: Drop-in clinics for teenagers : a controlled trial to determine their acceptability, effectiveness and cost
Author: Ayres, R.
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2005
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Objective: 1) To see whether the introduction of dedicated nurse-run general practice-based teenage drop-in clinics for sexual health would increase the uptake of contraceptive services by young people as compared to traditional GP services. 2) To investigate teenagers views on and use of sexual health services, and to explore barriers to assessing contraception. (the descriptive survey) Setting: Rural and urban general practices in the North and East Devon Health Authority area of South West England. Outcome measures: Proportion of teenagers obtaining contraceptive services. The study aim was to demonstrate a 10% increase in the intervention practices compared to controls. Qualitative data from the descriptive study was analysed thematically (perceptions of service providers, sources of advice and guidance, barriers to service use). Quantitative data was used to build up a picture of teenage sexual activity and service use. Results: The proportion of teenagers obtaining contraceptive services was higher overall in case as compared to control practices (an increase of 2.03% against a decrease of 2.22% in control practices), however the target of a 10% increase in contraceptive provision was not met. Case practices showed very great variation in the numbers attending the drop-ins. Those attending the clinics were younger (25% under 16 years) than those using normal GP services and 42% had not previously attended any service. The descriptive project data confirmed that many sexually active teenagers are not regularly using contraception in the project area and that serious barriers exist that impede access to contraceptive services. These are explored. Conclusions: A weekly, hour long nurse-run drop-in sexual health service for teenagers in general practice produced a small increase in the proportion of teenagers obtaining contraceptive and was popular among teenagers and staff. Longer opening times and other locations might further improve effectiveness. Most teenagers obtain contraceptive services from general practice (especially in rural areas) but issues such as transport, confidentiality and anonymity should be addressed to improve access. This is crucial if government targets to reduce the high rates of teenage pregnancy in the UK are to be achieved.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (M.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available