273675 Workforce training needs and local barriers regarding HIV/AIDS prevention and care in rural Florida: An assessment using key informant interviews

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Quinn Lundquist, MPH, CPH , College of Public Health and Health Professions, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
Description: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) challenge us to reflect upon the environmental, social, and psychological characteristics of disease. The South is disproportionally affected by HIV and AIDS, where about 36% of the United States population and 40% of AIDS cases reside. The disease has penetrated the most vulnerable populations living in this area, especially low-income African Americans, resulting in devastating losses of life and heavy stigma throughout rural communities. The area is also characterized by lower levels of employment, health insurance, education, and inadequate access to health services. In addition, the public health workforce is shrinking, and may not be adept to handle the emerging risk. Public health physicians, nurses, case workers, program managers, and entry level staff are leaving the profession faster than are entering, resulting in a workforce that is essentially aging out. Furthermore, they often lack foundational public health education and training specific to core competencies surrounding prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS. Methods: This study utilized key informant interviews to assess workforce training needs focusing on HIV/AIDS in rural, medically under-served areas of North Florida. Results: Public health workers perceive a need to receive updates on prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS, along with information regarding the psychosocial aspects of the disease and a need for more patient centered care. There is also a need for training in communication skills, cultural competency, and coordination of services. However, significant barriers exist preventing rural health department workers from achieving their goals in the community.

Learning Areas:
Administration, management, leadership
Provision of health care to the public
Public health administration or related administration
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Assess professional development and workforce capacity issues regarding HIV/AIDS prevention and care from the point of view of different levels of the workforce. 2. Identify strategies to improve delivery and reach of training materials to these workers based on their needs. 3. Describe contextual barriers limiting HIV prevention and care in rural, medically under-served areas.

Keywords: Workforce, Rural Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I was the principal investigator and lead research associate for this study. I have an MPH in Social and Behavioral Sciences and an interest in the medically under-served and professional development for public health workers in Florida.
Any relevant financial relationships? Yes

Name of Organization Clinical/Research Area Type of relationship
Rural South Public Health Training Center Workforce Training Needs Employment (includes retainer)

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.