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Am J Prev Med. 2012 Mar;42(3):316-26. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2011.12.001.

Person-to-person interventions targeted to parents and other caregivers to improve adolescent health: a community guide systematic review.

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  • 1RTI International, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, USA.



Adolescence marks a time when many young people engage in risky behaviors with potential implications for long-term health. Interventions focused on adolescents' parents and other caregivers have the potential to affect adolescents across a variety of risk and health-outcome areas.


Community Guide methods were used to evaluate the effectiveness of caregiver-targeted interventions in addressing adolescent risk and protective behaviors and health outcomes. Sixteen studies published during the search period (1966-2007) met review requirements and were included in this review.


Effectiveness was assessed based on changes in whether or not adolescents engaged in specified risk and protective behaviors; frequency of risk and protective behaviors, and health outcomes, also informed the results. Results from qualifying studies provided sufficient evidence that interventions delivered person-to-person (i.e., through some form of direct contact rather than through other forms of contact such as Internet or paper) and designed to modify parenting skills by targeting parents and other caregivers are effective in improving adolescent health.


Interventions delivered to parents and other caregivers affect a cross-cutting array of adolescent risk and protective behaviors to yield improvements in adolescent health. Analysis from this review forms the basis of the recommendation by the Community Preventive Services Task Force presented elsewhere in this issue.

Published by Elsevier Inc.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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