Sunday, November 4, 2007

This presentation is part of : Adolescent Care Issues
Vulnerability Model of Adolescent Risk Behaviors
Mary A. Cazzell, RN, BSN, School of Nursing, University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, TX, USA
Learning Objective #1: identify the components of The Vulnerability Model of Adolescent Risk Behavior.
Learning Objective #2: discuss both empirically supported and not-yet-researched conceptual relationships from The Vulnerability Model of Adolescent Risk Behaviors.

Multidisciplinary literature review has identified individual, family, community, and environmental vulnerabilities affecting an adolescent’s health status.  Do certain protective and risk factors contribute to specific adolescent high-risk behaviors or can these factors be generalized for all adolescent high risk behavior patterns? What is the best approach to prevent risk behaviors or intervene with an adolescent?  Would broad school and community interventions at the national, state,or local levels succeed?  Are family intervention programs the ideal way to approach adolescent health?  Should prevention programs begin during elementary school for both the child and parent?  The Vulnerability Model of Adolescent Risk Behaviors was developed as a theoretical framework to address these clinical and research questions.  Based on empirical data with a structure derived from Neuman Systems Model, this framework depicts the five factor adolescent inner core surrounded by three layers of influence that can positively or negatively affect the adolescent’s actions toward high risk behaviors in the presence of environmental stressors.  A correlational matrix of statements graphically depicts the empirically supported and the unstudied relationships among the concepts of the model.  This vulnerability model encourages multidisciplinary and collaborative research to validate and further refine the theory.  Practice and research using the model has the potential to contribute significant knowledge of adolescent risky behaviors, an important public health issue.