245849 Finding opportunities for program refinement: An evaluation of an education initiative regarding HIV vaccine research on key influencers in communities impacted by HIV/AIDS

Monday, October 31, 2011: 10:30 AM

Caroline McLeod, PhD , NOVA Research Company, Bethesda, MD
Daniel Eckstein, MA , NOVA Research Company, Bethesda, MD
Lisbeth Jarama, PhD , NOVA Research Company, Bethesda, MD
Paul A. Young, MBA, MPH , NOVA Research Company, Bethesda, MD
Background: The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) HIV Vaccine Research Education Initiative (NHVREI) is working to increase understanding of HIV vaccine research among U.S. populations most affected by HIV/AIDS (i.e., African Americans, Hispanic/Latinos, and men who have sex with men). NHVREI is a complex, comprehensive education program that disseminates information through multiple channels, including partnerships with non-governmental organizations, conference outreach, and media activities. A key guiding principle of the initiative is that information will be taken up by key influencers and spread throughout the community by means of their networks. Methods: Evaluators collected information from focus groups of key influencers, interviews with initiative staff, and an online survey of over 500 key influencers identified through organizations for which they work. The survey response rate was 69 percent. Findings were discussed with partners and program staff, who were able to provide cultural context for results and helped to identify opportunities for program refinement. Results: Integrated findings from the focus groups, interviews, and survey will be presented, including challenges encountered and addressed. Presenters will draw upon insights provided by partners and program staff with community expertise to summarize recommendations for refinements to NHVREI that will also be relevant to the design of future education programs based on similar models of information dissemination. Conclusion: This evaluation of a complex education initiative produced findings, which, combined with input from community experts, yielded recommendations on how best to implement programs that disseminate information through social networks.

Learning Areas:
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe the procedure for including input from community and program experts in the design and implementation of an education program disseminating information through networks of key influencers. 2. Discuss key elements of an education program based on diffusion of information through networks, including those that are most effective.

Keywords: Health Education Strategies, HIV/AIDS

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the lead analyst on the Evaluation of the NIAID HIV Vaccine Research Education Initiative, a contract from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. I have worked as an evaluator for almost 20 years and have experience presenting at APHA and other conferences, as well as at government briefings.
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.