Efficacy of an adapted HIV/STD prevention intervention for incarcerated women: Findings from the project POWER study
Background: Incarcerated women face disproportionate HIV/STD burden, and interventions are needed to reduce rates of infection. This study adapted an evidence-based intervention for women (Project SAFE), and tested the efficacy of the adapted intervention (POWER) with incarcerated women. POWER is an HIV/STD prevention intervention focusing on the influence of substance abuse, power inequity in relationships, interpersonal violence, mental health, and social support on risk. We hypothesized that participation in POWER will increase condom use and decrease risky behavior. Methods: The study randomized 523 incarcerated women to the eight-session POWER intervention plus four post-release booster calls, or to a single-session control intervention providing standard HIV/STD prevention information. Women were followed for up to 6 months post-release. Mixed effects models were used to examine intervention efficacy among 357 participants with one or more post-release interviews. Results: Participants had a mean age of 34 years (range 18-59), and 56% were white and 37% African American. Relative to control participants, POWER participants had lower odds of unprotected sex outside of monogamous relationship (OR=0.62, p=.02), and greater odds of condom use with primary partners (OR=1.80, p=.01) at follow-up. POWER participants also reported fewer sex partners at follow-up than control participants (p=0.058). There were no significant intervention effects on knowledge about partner's HIV status, multiple concurrent partners, drug use before sex, number of unprotected intercourse acts, or incident STDs. Conclusions: The POWER intervention was successful in reducing sexual risk behaviors. Interventions of this type can be implemented in prisons to reduce HIV/STD burden among women post-release.
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Describe the HIV/STD risk of incarcerated women
Describe the adapted POWER intervention
Describe the results of the randomized control trial
Keyword(s): HIV Risk Behavior, HIV Interventions
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a lead behavioral scientist at the CDC for the past 11 years. I conduct operational research to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of HIV prevention programs and activities.
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.