Justify your love: Testing an online STI-risk communication intervention designed to promote condom use and STI-testing

Authors: Mevissen, Fraukje1; Ruiter, Robert1; Meertens, Ree2; Zimbile, Filippo3; Schaalma, Herman1

Source: Psychology and Health, Volume 26, Number 2, February 2011 , pp. 205-221(17)

Publisher: Routledge, part of the Taylor & Francis Group

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The efficacy of a tailored, web-based intervention communicating the risks of sexually transmitted infections (STI) for heterosexual young adults was examined in a randomised, controlled trial. The main aims of the relationship-oriented intervention were to influence risk perceptions and to promote (maintenance of) condom use and STI-testing among young adults who reported being recently engaged in a heterosexual relationship. The intervention addressed risk perceptions, attitudes, normative beliefs, self-efficacy and skills related to condom use and STI-testing. Outcomes were compared immediately after the intervention (N = 171) and 3 months later (N = 115) to a non-tailored intervention group and to a control group. Cognitive and behavioural outcomes showed that the tailored intervention was efficacious in influencing perceived susceptibility to STI and STI-testing intentions immediately after the intervention, and in reducing rates of unprotected sex at 3 months.

Keywords: heterosexual relationships; intervention; online; risk perception; sexually transmitted infections; tailoring; young adults

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/08870446.2011.531575

Affiliations: 1: Department of Work and Social Psychology, Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands 2: Department of Health Promotion, Nutrition and Toxicology Research Institute Maastricht (NUTRIM) and Care and Public Health Research Institute (CAPHRI), Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands 3: STI AIDS Netherlands, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Publication date: February 1, 2011

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