Objectives: To examine the efficacy of sexual risk reduction interventions among South African youth.
Methods: Electronic databases were searched to identify studies published between 2007 and early 2013. Studies were eligible if they (1) targeted youth age 9-26, (2) evaluated sexual risk reduction interventions and (3) reported at least one behavioral outcome. Independent raters coded study characteristics, and intervention content. Weighted mean effect sizes were calculated; positive effect sizes indicated less sexual risk behavior and incident STIs.
Results: Ten studies (k = 11, N = 22,788; 54% female;79% Black-African) were included. Compared to controls, interventions were successful at delaying sexual intercourse and, among sexually active youth, at increasing condom use. A single study found reductions in the incidence of herpes simplex virus-2, but not HIV.
Conclusions: Implementing behavioral interventions to delay sexual debut and improve condom use can help to reduce the transmission of HIV among South African youth
The Miriam Hospital, Centers for Behavioral and Preventive Medicine, CORO West, Suite 309, 164 Summit Ave., Providence, RI 02906