203543 Integration of HIV prevention services for HIV-positive young men of color who have sex with men into house/ball activities

Monday, November 9, 2009

Gregory L. Phillips II, MS , Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health and Health Services, The George Washington University, Washington, DC
James Peterson, PhD , Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health and Health Services, George Washington University, Washington, DC
Diane Binson, PhD , Center for AIDS Prevention Studies, University of California, Department of Medicine, San Francisco, CA
Julia Hidalgo, ScD, MSW, MPH , Department of Health Policy, George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services, Washington, DC
Manya Magnus, PhD, MPH , The George Washington University, School of Public Health and Health Sciences, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Washington, DC
Purpose. Young men of color who have sex with men (YMSM of color) have been severely affected by the HIV epidemic in the US, with surveillance data showing that 71% of infections in men in 2005 occurred among MSM and black MSM. We examined the feasibility of incorporating HIV-prevention services into house/ball activities.

Methods. A systematic literature review was conducted to characterize literature regarding house/ball social activities for YMSM of color and their relationship to HIV prevention. Discussions were facilitated at outreach staff roundtables at grantee meetings of the Outreach, Care, and Prevention to Engage HIV Seropositive Young MSM of Color SPNS Multisite Study, and four semi-structured phone interviews were conducted with outreach workers and supervisors at sites to identify how house/ball activities have been integrated into prevention activities in each city. Two qualitative researchers from the coordinating center attended a house/ball summit to learn from current house members, interview key informants, and observe a mini-ball.

Results. Multiple topics arose that may be able to suggest HIV-prevention approaches. For a program to be successfully implemented, it must be initiated through the existing house structures with house parent collaboration. Not all approaches are effective; for example, one mini-ball had a lack of interest in HIV testing, while others were successful at integration of prevention services and social activities.

Conclusions. While collaboration with house/ball organizations offers promise in the integration of community- and organization-based service provision, research needs to be done in order to develop effective methods to reach the house/ball community.

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the feasibility of combining HIV-prevention with house/ball activities.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been a research assistant on this YMSM of color grant for over 2 years and have spent much time conducting analyses and observations of relevant data. I am also a PhD candidate in epidemiology and plan to use my knowledge from my position as data manager on NHBS to develop a dissertation topic.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

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