237612 Using a community-based participatory approach to understand social, cultural and psychological factors that influence HIV risk among African American heterosexually active college men

Tuesday, November 1, 2011: 11:06 AM

Louis F. Graham, DrPH, MPH , School of Public Health, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Warner L. McGee, DrPH, MPH , President & CEO, B.E. S.A.F.E Inc., Atlanta, GA
Regina McCoy Pulliam, MPH , Department of Public Health Education, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, NC
Kim Williams, PhD , Prevention Research Branch, Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA
Kirk D. Henny, PhD , Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA
Scott Rhodes, PhD, MPH, CHES , Social Sciences and Health Policy, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC
Robert Aronson, DrPH , Department of Public Health Education, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, NC
Background: African American males are disproportionately affected by HIV/AIDS. In North Carolina, black men have six times the rate of infection among white men. NC is experiencing a sharp increase in HIV infections among young African American men, and a focus of the outbreak is on college campuses. Methods: We conducted formative research on a college campus to inform the design of an HIV risk-reduction intervention. Community-based participatory research was used. 120 men were recruited, using online and campus-based strategies. Participants completed a brief risk survey, with 47 participating in five focus groups, and 20 in individual interviews. Results: Survey data identify four independent factors associated with using condoms in the past 3 months: younger age (p<.01); living on campus (p<.003); not having a primary partner (p<.001); and decreased alcohol (p<.002) and drug use (p<.001). Focus group and interview data revealed influences on risk for HIV: how men define sex and sexual risk; relationship challenges to honest dialogue about sex; and the importance of masculine and sexual reputation in a college setting. Conclusion: Findings suggest HIV efforts should focus on students who are older, live off campus, use alcohol and drugs, and have primary sexual partners. In addition to basic HIV and sexual health information, HIV interventions tailored for this population should address cultural definitions of sex, ideas of protection, sexual communication and ways men negotiate their masculinity that contribute to risk. We used these results to develop an HIV risk-reduction intervention for heterosexually active African American college men.

Learning Areas:
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
1. List four factors associated with condom use identified through formative research with African American male college students. 2. Discuss how definitions of sex and sexual risk among African American male college students pose challenges to HIV risk communication. 3. Identify aspects of masculine ideology and masculine expression that may contribute to high risk sexual behaviors.

Keywords: African American, HIV Interventions

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I was engaged in all phases of the study, from protocol development through data analysis and writing. I am experienced in CBPR and have expertise in sexuality and masculinity with African American men.
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.