Risk reduction counselling for prevention of sexually transmitted infections: how it works and how to make it work

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Prevention research in the past decade has proved the efficacy of risk reduction counselling in reducing the risks for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). The question currently facing STI service providers is therefore not so much whether counselling should be part of the standard of STI care but rather how this intervention can be implemented given the logistical and resource constraints of a busy practice setting. After a brief introduction of the history and an overview of the models for risk reduction counselling and their theoretical and scientific underpinnings, the focus of this paper will be on the extent to which individual prevention models have been adopted in different clinical settings, the impediments to implementation and suggestions for improvement.

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