Systematic review of HIV prevention interventions in China: a health communication perspective

Int J Public Health. 2014 Feb;59(1):123-42. doi: 10.1007/s00038-013-0467-0. Epub 2013 Apr 20.


Objectives: To examine whether communication strategies and principles have been utilized in the HIV prevention intervention programs conducted in China.

Methods: Comprehensive literature searches were conducted using PsycINFO, Medline, and Academic Search Complete with combinations of a number of keywords. Studies were included if they (1) were conducted in China and published prior to October 2011; (2) tested interventions promoting HIV/sexual risk reduction; and (3) reported empirical outcome evaluations on HIV knowledge, condom use and other condom-related variables. Data on 11 dimensions were extracted and analyzed, including formative research, theory, message targeting, messenger and channels, process evaluation, evaluation design, outcome measures.

Results: The majority of the 45 intervention studies were not theory-based, did not report conducting formative research or process evaluation, used pretest-posttest control group designs, combined nonmedia channels, printed and visual materials, and employed HIV knowledge and condom use as outcome measures.

Conclusions: Many HIV prevention interventions in China have been successful in reducing HIV risk-related outcomes. This literature has its weaknesses; however, the current review illuminates gaps in the literature and points to important future directions for research.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • China
  • Communication*
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / prevention & control*
  • Health Promotion*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Risk Reduction Behavior*