HIV prevention, identity and testing: effecting measurable changes of behaviour, attitudes, skills and knowledge in high risk MSM populations…

Published: July 18, 2010

HIV prevention, identity and testing: effecting measurable changes of behaviour, attitudes, skills and knowledge in high risk MSM populations through the creation of I) care pathways for HIV negative MSM, II) identity, responsibility and ownership strengthening peer-led, one-to-one interventions, and III) tools for measuring outcomes against criteria that gauge an individual´s sexual well-being and likelihood of sero-conversion

R.S. Lupasko1, G. Ussher2, A. Evans2

1The Metro Centre, Peer Support Services, London, United Kingdom, 2The Metro Centre, London, United Kingdom

Issues:  The presentation will address the following issues:

  • Effective ways to measure outcomes in HIV prevention
  • Rates of sero-conversion among MSM populations
  • Creating clinical care pathways for HIV negative populations
  • The benefits of narrow-focus, one-to-one interventions against broad, population-focused approaches
  • Broadening the clinical remit to embrace holistic approaches to sexual health
  • The role of sexual identity in HIV prevention

Description: In 2006, The Metro Centre in London launched the MetroSafe peer mentoring programme, which pairs high risk MSM who have tested negative with volunteer MSM mentors to work through a structured programme of 9 modules which explore the broader contextual reasons why an individual might put himself at risk of sero-conversion. Testing clinics who adopt the programme have representatives ready to assess and register high-risk MSM referred by consultants or health advisors. Each individual´s progress is measured pre-, mid-, post and 6-month-post-intervention by the BASK Inventory, created especially for the programme to measure changes in an individual´s behaviour, attitude, skills and knowledge with respect to the likelihood of sero-conversion.

The presentation will examine the success of this approach thus far as well as its implications for future developments within the field of HIV prevention.

Lessons learned:

  • The 5-month intervention effectively changes participants´ BASK (16% change overall, 34% according to most improved BASK category).
  • Links between clinics and community health interventions strengthen MSM identity
  • Strong MSM identity reduces the likelihood of sero-conversion in high-risk MSM
  • Measurable outcomes are key successful, reactive interventions

Next steps: The Metro Centre is currently piloting MetroSafe in Kiev and Odessa and among Heterosexual African and MSM minority communities in London.

The BASK Inventory has been and continues to be adapted for use in other interventions.
Results will be published once a large enough test group has been established.

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