Dual Contraceptive Method Use Among Youth in Alternative Schools


Dual contraceptive method use, or using a highly effective contraceptive method plus a barrier method like condoms, is gaining attention as a strategy for preventing unplanned pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. We investigated rates of dual method use among a sample of youth in urban alternative schools, and explored the relationship between dual method use and sexual partner type. The study analyzed data from 765 students enrolled in 11 district-run continuation high schools in northern California. We explored the association between dual method use and sexual partner type (steady only, a mix of steady and non-steady, and non-steady only) using logistic regression. Differences in dual rates by partner type were statistically significant, with higher rates of dual methods use reported among young people reporting non-steady sexual partners only, as compared to those with steady partners only. The data illustrate that young people in alternative school settings could gain from further intervention on the benefits, skills, and challenges of using two methods of contraception as opposed to one with both steady and non-steady sexual partners.

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The study was supported by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (HD#041856). The authors gratefully acknowledge the contributions to this research project by the educators, research staff, and tracking staff who helped ensure the project was implemented successfully. Additionally, we express our sincere appreciation to the district representatives, principals, teachers, school staff, and students who participated in the study.

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Correspondence to Karin K. Coyle.

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Coyle, K.K., Peterson, A.J., Franks, H.M. et al. Dual Contraceptive Method Use Among Youth in Alternative Schools. J Primary Prevent 37, 561–567 (2016).

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  • Adolescent contraception
  • Adolescent condom use
  • Dual method contraception
  • Health education
  • Urban populations