Drug-involved Mexican-origin girls’ HIV prevention needs: A pilot study

Vera Lopez, Patricia Dustman, Tiffany Williams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of this pilot study was to collect data to inform the development of an HIV prevention program for drug-involved Mexican-origin (MO) adolescent girls. Eighteen in-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted with drug-involved MO girls in addition to focus group discussions with nineteen other drug-involved MO girls and eight clinical service providers in 2009–2010. Emergent themes indicated that HIV prevention programs for drug-involved MO girls should be girl-centered, focused on relationship development, and include trained peer facilitators who share the same cultural and “street” background as the girls. The program should omit scare tactics associated with risky sexual behaviors and emphasize individual empowerment skills useful to negotiate sexual decisions successfully. In addition, a girl-centered intervention for MO girls should address important concerns for this group, including resistance skills and strategies regarding relationships with older men, teenage motherhood, sexual infidelity, sexual coercion, and dating violence. Intervention activities should also be interactive with an emphasis on guiding girls as they learn to critically assess personal risk while at the same time learning skills and resources to address these issues in real life.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)326-344
Number of pages19
JournalWomen and Health
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 2 2016


  • Latina
  • drug use
  • high-risk
  • sexually transmitted infections

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Drug-involved Mexican-origin girls’ HIV prevention needs: A pilot study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this