The mediating role of partner communication frequency on condom use among African American adolescent females participating in an HIV prevention intervention

Jessica M. Sales, Delia L. Lang, Ralph J. DiClemente, Teaniese P. Latham, Gina M. Wingood, James W. Hardin, Eve S. Rose

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Objective: Although effective HIV prevention interventions have been developed for adolescents, few interventions have explored whether components of the intervention are responsible for the observed changes in behaviors postintervention. This study examined the mediating role of partner communication frequency on African American adolescent females' condom use postparticipation in a demonstrated efficacious HIV risk-reduction intervention. Methods: As part of a randomized controlled trial, African American adolescent females (N = 715), 15-21 years, seeking sexual health services, completed a computerized interview at baseline (prior to intervention) and again 6 and 12 months follow-up post-intervention participation. The interview assessed adolescents' sexual behavior and partner communication skills, among other variables, at each time point. Using generalized estimating equation (GEE) techniques, both logistic and linear regression models were employed to test mediation over the 12-month follow-up period. Additional tests were conducted to assess the significance of the mediated models. Results: Mediation analyses observed that partner communication frequency was a significant partial mediator of both proportion of condom-protected sex acts (p = .001) and consistent condom use (p = .001). Conclusion: Partner communication frequency, an integral component of this HIV intervention, significantly increased as a function of participating in the intervention, partially explaining the change in condom use observed 12 months postintervention. Understanding what intervention components are associated with behavior change is important for future intervention development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)63-69
Number of pages7
JournalHealth Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2012



  • Adolescents
  • Condom use
  • Partner communication frequency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this