Engaging young Black males in sexual and reproductive health care: A review of the literature


Young Black males (YBM) ages 18 to 24 years are more at risk of contracting sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and have a substantially greater need for sexual reproductive health (SRH) services than other groups. Despite this significant need, the extant literature does not provide a comprehensive picture of how YBM seek preventive care services (e.g., STI testing). Therefore, the purpose of this review is to address YBM’s SRH access and use of STI/HIV testing and screening in this population, with a specific emphasis on young heterosexual Black males, by identifying barriers and facilitators of engaging with SRH care. An electronic search was performed using Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL), PsycInfo, PubMed, and Scopus online databases. Keywords were adapted to each database and included variations of “Black males,” “sexual reproductive healthcare services,” “youth (18-24 years old),” and “healthcare access and utilization.” Studies from the review reported that barriers to engaging in SRH care included lack of health insurance, ideas of masculinity that conflict with SRH care, stigma related to accessing services, and lack of knowledge regarding available services and care options. The top facilitators for utilizing SRH care were engagement on behalf of health clinics, confidence gained from social support, access to quality health care in one’s community, and trust in the health care system and providers. This review contributes to the current state of the science and is important to the improvement of high-quality services for this population, including respect, choice in care, confidentially, and compassion.


Burns JC, Reeves J, Calvert WJ, Adams M, Ozuna-Harrison R, Smith MJ, Baranwal S, Johnson K, Rodgers CRR, Watkins DC




  • Epidemiology and Determinants of Health
    • Determinants of Health
  • Determinants of Health
    • Social support
    • Health services
  • Population(s)
    • Ethnoracial communities
    • Heterosexual men
    • General HIV- population
  • Testing
    • Testing
  • Health Systems
    • Delivery arrangements


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