268048 A community-partnered intervention to reduce HIV-related stigma and promote HIV testing through African American and Latino churches

Monday, October 29, 2012 : 3:15 PM - 3:30 PM

Kathryn Pitkin Derose, PhD, MPH , Health Program, RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, CA
Laura M. Bogart, PhD , Children's Hospital Boston/Harvard Medical School, Harvard University, Boston, MA
David E. Kanouse, PhD , Health Program, RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, CA
Deborah Collins, PA-C, MSHCA, MPAS, AAHIVS , Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services, Long Beach, CA
Michael Mata, MDiv, MA, MCP , Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, CA
Clyde W. Oden, OD, MPH, MBA, MDiv , Bryant Temple AME Church, Los Angeles, CA
Blanca Dominguez, MPH , Health Program, RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, CA
Alexandria Felton, MPH , Health Program, RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, CA
Karen Florez, DrPH, MPH , Health Program, RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, CA
Jennifer Hawes-Dawson, BA , Survey Research Group, RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, CA
Malcolm Williams, MPP, PhD , Health Program, RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, CA
Issues: Religious congregations in African American and Latino communities are uniquely positioned to address HIV. However, few have done so, in part because of HIV-related stigma and discomfort with harm reduction strategies.

Description: Through a partnership between a research organization, religious leaders, and a local health department, we developed a multi-component intervention to reduce HIV stigma and promote HIV testing through African American and Latino churches. The intervention, based on social psychological theory and our case study research, aims to propel congregants toward acceptance of people with HIV and testing. Specifically, it: educates congregants about HIV; provides contact with people with HIV through testimonials, role-plays, and simulated interactions; and offers on-site rapid HIV testing. We piloted this intervention in 5 congregations (2 small Latino Pentecostal, 2 medium-sized African American Baptist, and 1 very large Latino Catholic congregations) in communities highly affected by HIV.

Lessons Learned: We tailored implementation of workshops, pastor sermon, and testing events according to church size, organizational structure, worship and meeting schedules, space availability, and culture/language. Pastors and priests delivered a sermon on HIV that encouraged compassion and testing, although specific messages varied across congregations. Congregations preferred to hold testing events right after worship services, but it was challenging to reconcile large numbers of congregations seeking testing with requirements for confidentiality and proper test procedures. Recommendations: Pairing HIV stigma reduction and testing activities in congregations offers potential, but it is important to develop testing procedures that accommodate a fast flow of testers in a short time period.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Diversity and culture
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Understand key congregation factors that can influence how interventions are implemented in churches. 2. Identify the components of an HIV stigma-reducing intervention and how these can be adapted in churches. 3. Review lessons learned on implementing a stigma-reducing intervention across churches of various ethnicities, languages, sizes, and denominations.

Keywords: HIV Interventions, Faith Community

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am principal investigator of the study on which it is based. I led all phases of the study and oversaw development of the intervention described in the presentation.
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.