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AIDS prevention among homeless men in the south

J. Gary Linn, PhD, School of Nursing, Tennessee State University, 1406 Beechwood Avenue, Nashville, TN 37212, 615-297-1354, jlinn87844@aol.com, BA Husaini, PhD, Center for Health Research, Tennessee State University, 3500 John A. Merritt Blvd., Nashville, TN 37209, and Rosemary Theriot, EdD, School of Allied Health, Tennessee State University, 3500 John Merritt Blvd., Nashville, TN 37209.

This project assessed an intervention to reduce sexual risk behaviors in a high risk population: homeless African American and Caucasian men with mental impairment. In a comparison group clinical trial, men were assigned to an experimental cognitive behavioral or a control intervention and monitored for over 12 months. Men were recruited from a psychiatric program in two shelters for homeless men in middle Tennessee. An ethnically mixed group of subjects (66% African-American and 44% Caucasian) were included in the program. The majority had a chronic psychiatric disorder and a co-morbid substance abuse disorder. The 260 participants who were sexually active (132 experimental, 128 control) prior to the trial were the main target of the intervention. An experimental intervention (SexG), adapted from Susser and associates (1999), comprised six group sessions. The control intervention was a 6-session HIV educational program. Sexual risk behavior was the primary outcome. The experimental and control groups were compared with respect to the mean score on the sexual risk index. Complete follow-up data were obtained on 256 men (98%) for the initial six month follow-up. These men have been monitored for the remainder of the 12 month follow-up. The intervention (SexG) effectively reduced sexual risk behaviors of homeless mentally ill African-American and Caucasian men. Similar strategies may be successful in other impaired populations.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: HIV/AIDS, Homelessness

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

HIV/AIDS: Testing, Prevention and Service

The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA