Young people of Chinese origin in western countries: a systematic review of their sexual attitudes and behaviour

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People of Chinese origin are a growing population group in western countries. The community is seen to be marginalised, under-researched and neglected, in fact the least understood ethnic minority. This paper reports on a systematic review of sexual attitudes and behaviour among ethnic Chinese young people (mainly aged 13–25 years) living in western countries. An extensive literature search was conducted to cover the period of 1989 and 2009 using Medline, CINAHL, PsycINFO and ScienceDirect databases. There has been a dearth of literature in this area. However, results from existing literature show that ethnic Chinese youth reported poorer sexual health knowledge than white young people in their host countries, while they were found to be more likely to disapprove of uncommitted sex, be virgins, lose their virginity at a later age and have fewer sexual partners. Factors associated with their sexual attitudes and behaviour have also been identified. Countries like the United Kingdom, United States and Canada have become multicultural societies with many diverse ethnic groups. Without doubt educators and sexual health professionals need to provide sex education and services which should be culturally appropriate to people from diverse ethnic backgrounds. An understanding of their sexual values, sexual behaviour and associated factors is the first step towards achieving this goal.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)117 - 128
Number of pages11
JournalHealth and Social Care in the Community
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2010


  • attitudes
  • chinese
  • ethnic minorities
  • sexual behaviour
  • systematic review
  • young people


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