Factors promoting and impeding HIV testing among adolescents in juvenile drug court

Rebecca L. Fix, Elizabeth J. Letourneau, Pia M. Mauro, Michael R. McCart, Ashli J. Sheidow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


A randomized pilot study compared Risk Reduction Therapy for Adolescents (RRTA) to treatment as usual (TAU); the present study examined whether intervention condition influenced HIV testing, barriers to HIV testing, and HIV communication among adolescents involved in juvenile drug courts overall and by sexual experience. Of 105 participants, 13.3% had HIV pre-treatment testing, whereas 27.2% (of 92 participants) indicated follow-up HIV testing. Sexually active youth in RRTA (but not in TAU) reported a significant increase in HIV testing over time. RRTA demonstrated the greatest increase in HIV testing (8% pre-treatment to 44% follow-up), but not significantly more than TAU. Prevalence of barriers to HIV testing were observed at consistent rates among adolescents who did not get tested for HIV within either treatment condition. Adolescents in both conditions reported increased communication about HIV at follow-up. HIV testing was positively associated with perceived need for testing and testing resource accessibility. Stigma remained a barrier to testing at follow-up for RRTA (22%) and TAU (21%) participants. The RRTA intervention increased HIV testing and both interventions increased adolescents’ communication about HIV; however, barriers persisted, warranting treatment modification.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)177-180
Number of pages4
JournalAIDS Care - Psychological and Socio-Medical Aspects of AIDS/HIV
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2019


  • Barriers
  • parent–child communication
  • risky behavior
  • sexual active
  • substance use
  • youth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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