Students' Acquisition and Use of School Condoms in a High School Condom Availability Program

by Mark A. Schuster, Robert M. Bell, Sandra H. Berry, David E. Kanouse

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Describes the impact of a condom availability program located in an urban high school that serves a racially and socioeconomically diverse community in Los Angeles County. This program made male condoms readily available to all students without their having to go through a gatekeeper and without requiring parental consent. One year after the program was initiated, a survey of students across all high school grades suggested widespread use of the program. Students knew the program existed and had an accurate view of how it functioned. Approximately half had taken school condoms, and slightly more than half of these were using them for sexual activities, indicating the program's broad impact. Students also explored condoms they received at school, without having sex. The vast majority of students supported the program and believed that students would avail themselves of it far less often if parental consent were required.

Originally published in: Pediatrics, v. 100, no. 4, 4 October 1997, pp. 689-694.

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