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A Sexual Health Training Needs Analysis in Kirklees: a mixed-methods design

By Serena McCluskey, Jane Williams, Idah D. Nyawata and Annie Topping


Background\ud There is good evidence that personal social and health education (PHSE), particularly\ud when linked to sexual health services, can have an impact on young people’s attitudes,\ud delay sexual activity, and/or reduce conception rates. However, PHSE and sexual health\ud training needs in non-school settings are often not addressed, yet there are many other\ud settings that young people access, often seeking advice more informally. Therefore, a\ud training needs analysis was undertaken, targeting all those who work with young people\ud in Kirklees in order to provide a wide-ranging assessment of their PHSE and sexual\ud health training needs.\ud Methods\ud A mixed-methods research design was adopted, comprising of two phases. In the first\ud phase, a questionnaire was designed and distributed to relevant organisations and\ud personnel across Kirklees (n=296). The questionnaire asked participants to rate their\ud level of competency (ranging from ‘novice’ to ‘expert’) in being able to provide young\ud people with information about key areas in PHSE and sexual health. The second phase\ud comprised a series of focus groups and telephone interviews to gain a more in-depth\ud understanding of specific training needs and of the barriers and levers to implementing\ud successful training programmes.\ud Results\ud Significant variations exist in sexual health training needs across Kirklees. Specific\ud concerns were raised around child protection issues, communicating with young people,\ud practical knowledge and skills, raising self-esteem in young people, cultural and religious\ud issues, outreach, signposting, networking, and the need for multi-professional training.\ud Findings also highlighted some of the inadequacies and inconsistencies in current\ud training provision, and how sexual health is prioritised among relevant organisations in\ud Kirklees.\ud Conclusions\ud Training in PHSE and sexual health affects the quality and range of services offered to\ud young people, as well as access to them. In order to meet the UK government’s targets\ud and reduce the burden of sexual ill-health and teenage pregnancy, these issues must be\ud viewed as a top priority by those providing training and education and for those working\ud with young peopl

Topics: RA0421
Publisher: University of Huddersfield
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