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Adolescence, Health behavior, Health status, Risk taking, Self-efficacy



  1. Honig, Judy EdD, CPNP


Purpose: To describe perceptions of health status among a sample of urban minority adolescents and the contribution of demographics, intrinsic motivation, general self-efficacy, risk taking, and stressful life experiences on the adolescent's perception of health status.


Method: Correlational design. A total of 71 adolescents were studied using the Adolescent Health Chart for perceived health status, the Health Self-Determinism Index for Children, the Self-Efficacy Scale, the Risk Taking Instrument, and the Life Events Checklist.


Results: There were no statistically significant effects of demographics on perceived health status. Scores of Perceived Health Status correlated with scores of self-efficacy (r = 0.56;p < .0001), risk-taking (r = 0.39;p < .001), negative events (r = 0.32;p < .01) and violent events (r = -0.41;p < .001).


Clinical Implications: The study findings suggest that self-efficacy, risk taking, and life events are predictive of perceived health status in urban minority adolescents. The results contribute to the present body of knowledge about patterns of adolescent health as perceived by the adolescent. In addition to expanding the understanding of the minority adolescent experience in relation to health promotion attributes and health compromising behaviors, the results identify antecedents that are predictive of improved perceived health status for the urban adolescent.