Send to

Choose Destination
J Adolesc Health. 2003 Aug;33(2 Suppl):23-30.

Transitioning youths into care: linking identified HIV-infected youth at outreach sites in the community to hospital-based clinics and or community-based health centers.

Author information

Division of Adolescent Medicine, Stroger Hospital of Cook County, Chicago, Illinois, USA.



To describe and analyze the process of transitioning HIV-infected youths from the point of HIV diagnosis into HIV treatment. Rather than simply offering HIV positive youths a list of referrals, the youth-focused SPNS grantees (AWAC) found it vital that youths were immediately assisted with linkage to a medical provider.


From February 1997 to December 2000, 107 identified HIV-infected youths from the five adolescent SPNS projects were surveyed on needs and barriers. The time interval between HIV testing and youth linkage to care was also noted.


Nine percent of youth reported perceived barriers to accessing health care. Perceived needs were identified as Mental Health (44.9%; n = 48); Alcohol and drug treatment (14%; n = 15); transportation to health care settings (40.2%; n = 43); and housing (46.7%; N = 50). At sites tracking linkage to care, the time of being transitioned into a medical setting ranged from 5 to 55 days (average 26 days).


The period of transitioning identified HIV-infected youths into care can be reduced from 1-5 years to as short as 5-55 days. Success with linking these youth to care involves establishing a series of contacts at outreach sites wherein program staff seeks to build trusting relationships with youths, is able to track these youths and identify and address perceived needs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center