Educational level, employment, and income are key components of socioeconomic status (SES). This article is a systematic review of SES variables in North American countries, and their relationship to willingness to participate (WTP) and retention in a hypothetical preventive phase 3 HIV vaccine trial and in actual HIV vaccine trials. Men who have sex with men (MSM) tended to have higher educational levels, be more employed, and had higher income levels than injection drug users (IDU) and women at heterosexual risk (WAHR). In large part, there was no relationship between educational level and WTP, as well as between educational level and retention. Similarly, there was no relationship between employment and WTP. In WAHR who were African-American, those employed were less likely than others to complete the study at 18 months. The exact occupations of participants analyzed have not been specified, and specification of these occupations may help determine whether enhanced retention (ER) strategies are required.
Keywords: HIV vaccine; Retention; Socioeconomic status; Willingness to participate.
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