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The health and health behaviors of young men who have sex with men

Michele D Kipke, Katrina Kubicek, George Weiss, Carolyn Wong, Donna Lopez, Ellen Iverson, Wesley Ford
Journal of Adolescent Health 2007, 40 (4): 342-50

PURPOSE: To describe the range of health and mental health problems for which young men who have sex with men (YMSM) may be at risk.

METHODS: An audio-computer-assisted survey was administered to a large, ethnically diverse sample of 526 YMSM (aged 18-24 years) recruited from bars, clubs, and other social venues using a venue-based probability sampling method.

RESULTS: Subjects reported a range of health and mental health problems, and involvement in health-compromising behaviors, such as overweight/obesity, depression, and suicidal thoughts/attempts, and many were found to have high rates of sexually transmitted infections. Moreover, many reported not having insurance coverage and/or limited access to care.

CONCLUSIONS: Many of the health concerns and risks reported by these young men are preventable and can be addressed by any number of sectors, including health care and social service providers, religious organizations, schools, and employers.

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