Document Type


Publication Date

Summer 6-2009

Journal / Book Title

American Journal of Public Health


Studies of detained and incarcerated adolescent offenders in the United States indicate that these juveniles have an elevated risk of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). However, many more arrestees enter the “front end” of the juvenile justice system that is detained or incarcerated, and research into the STD risk profiles and service needs of this larger group is lacking. An expansion of STD testing (including of asymptomatic youths), prevention, and treatment is needed, as is improved knowledge about gender- and race-specific services. A pilot program in Florida has shown that juvenile justice and public health systems can collaborate to implement STD testing among new arrestees. With integrated linkages to treatment and prevention after release, this model could greatly reduce the STD burden in this underserved, high-risk population.

Published Citation

Belenko, Steven, Richard Dembo, Matthew Rollie, Kristina Childs, and Christopher Salvatore. "Detecting, preventing, and treating sexually transmitted diseases among adolescent arrestees: An unmet public health need." American Journal of Public Health 99, no. 6 (2009): 1032-1041.