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HIV-Related Sexual Risk Behaviours among Late-adolescent Jamaican Girls with Older Male Partners

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Objective: To describe HIV-related sexual risk behaviours among late-adolescent Jamaican girls and examine whether having an age-discordant male sexual partner (≥ 2 years older) was associated with a decrease in condom use at last coitus.

Methods: Utilizing an expanded Theory of Planned Behaviour, a survey was designed to capture HIVrelated sexual risk behaviours. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyse the final sample of one hundred and eighty-four late-adolescent girls (18–21 years) in Kingston, Jamaica.

Results: At first coitus, 70.3 per cent of the survey participants had done so with an older partner. At the time of the survey, 58.7 per cent of the sample reported being in an age-discordant relationship, with age differences between 2 and 39 years. While only 12 per cent of the sample reported having more than one sexual partner, 40 per cent of the sample reported that their older male partner had multiple sexual partners. Slightly more than half (58%) of late-adolescent girls reported condom use at last coitus. No significant differences were found in condom use between girls who had age-discordant partners and girls who had similar aged-partners.

Conclusion: Sexual relationships with older male partners are common among late-adolescent Jamaican girls, and may put girls at risk for acquiring HIV through unprotected coitus and coitus with someone who has multiple partners. As Jamaica and the broader Caribbean struggle to curtail the emergent HIV epidemic among adolescent girls, age-discordant relationships are a significant area for research and prevention efforts of clinicians and public health professionals.

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e-Published: 07 Oct, 2013
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