Online Program

Rejuvenating Community Based Research with urban MSM: How an experienced community health center is changing with the HIV epidemic to remain relevant

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Ashley Childs, M.Ed, Fenway Health, Boston, MA
Julia Gaggin, MPH, Fenway Health, Boston, MA
Issues: As the HIV epidemic has changed over time, the level of urgency among men who have sex with men (MSM) to be involved in community based research (CBR Research) for HIV prevention has diminished. Inter-agency competition for the same population of participants is causing over saturation in the community. Participants are being overwhelmed with a wide variety of HIV related studies and not offered the study best suited to their needs. Developing new strategies for engaging MSM to volunteer for HIV prevention research is crucial. Description: As a community health care facility we have developed methods of engaging potential participants through services such as HIV counseling and testing, general medical services, behavioral health care, and internal referrals from the research department as well as via social media. The organization has established a unique focus on training staff members to provide information about all Community Based Research projects and to guide participants in the process of selecting the most appropriate intervention for the participant. Lessons learned: The improvement in communication strategies for Community Based Research has resulted in coordinated efforts of the health center to re-engage MSM to participate in HIV prevention research. Successful strategies have included an emphasis on social media, collaboration across studies and referrals from staff and services within the health center. Recommendations: Collect data within the organization on resources available to determine trends and possible opportunities to collaborate. Unify recruitment efforts across studies to providing enriching volunteer experiences for participants.

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related education
Public health or related research
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Identify how Community Based Research at a community health center can be expanded internally and externally to combat exhausting community engagement in participating in clinical HIV studies.

Keyword(s): HIV Interventions, Community Research

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have a M.Ed in Human Sexuality with a strong focus on HIV/AIDS and working with the LGBTQ population. I have been doing HIV prevention and education work for most of my career, including on cutting edge biomedical research.
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.