243387 Community liaison program: A brief report on a culturally-oriented participatory health education pilot program to increase minority awareness of HIV and acceptance of HIV vaccine trials

Monday, October 31, 2011

Robin Kelley, PhD , D-Cals, NMAC, Washington, DC
Since HIV/AIDS was recognized in the U.S. in the early 1980s, American racial and ethnic minorities and vulnerable, marginalized populations have been disproportionately harmed by this epidemic. One response to address the disparities in AIDS rates is better communication within racial and ethnic groups about HIV vaccines, considered the best hope for prevention of HIV/AIDS. This is a brief process report of the sixteen month health education pilot program based on Diffusion of Innovation and social networking theories. The program was implemented by volunteer community liaisons for the purposes of increasing awareness of and support for HIV vaccine research in minority populations. This theoretically driven pilot program allowed the liaisons to integrate delivery of the HIV vaccine research messages created for the program into their existing activities and routines. The program trained liaisons in participatory engagement to tailor and adapt an HIV prevention message for their communities. Process evaluation data showed that the acceptance of participatory engagement and HIV vaccine message dissemination far exceeded expectations. The anticipated number of community members to receive the message was estimated at 500 with 10 volunteer liaisons, or 50 per person. However, the actual number of people reached was 644, with only 7 volunteer liaisons, or an average of 92 persons per liaison, almost double the original goal. Further research is recommended to analyze the specific behavioral changes that can come from the use of social networks in HIV vaccine research and awareness with minorities.

Learning Areas:
Communication and informatics

Learning Objectives:
Describes how to formulate an effective HIV vaccine research message accepted and supported by minority communities, specifically African Americans and Latinos.

Keywords: HIV/AIDS, Health Promotion

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the evaluation manager and assisted in the evaluation of this program as well as its write-up.
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.