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Ethn Health. 1998 Nov;3(4):283-99.

The Health Belief Model and HIV risk behaviours: a causal model analysis among Anglos, African-Americans and Mexican-Americans.

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University of Tennessee College of Social Work-Nashville Branch, USA.


A causal model of the Health Belief Model (HBM) is empirically evaluated which emphasizes possible indirect paths linking distal demographic and seriousness/susceptibility variables to HIV risk behaviours among Anglo, African-American, and Mexican-American adults. A specific focus of the paper is upon alcohol-related expectancies (anticipation of disinhibitory effects of alcohol upon sexual behavior) as a 'barrier' to preventive behaviours. Ethnic comparisons stem both from the paucity of available research on the HBM in minority populations and from recent questions regarding the applicability of rational models such as the HBM among minority groups. Analyses of data from a community sample of 1390 adults indicate relatively consistent direct effects of barriers for males and benefits for females upon HIV risk behaviors. The analyses suggest distinct paths operative among males and females. The susceptibility-barriers-risk behaviours path among males may suggest that alcohol-related expectancies (barriers in this model) may be more strongly related to risk behaviours among males than minority females.

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