The objective of this study was to develop and evaluate brief Motivational Interviewing (MI) to facilitate behaviour change in women at high risk of contracting sexually transmitted infections (STIs). One hundred and seventy-three women (mean age 24.7) at high risk of contracting STIs were randomized to a brief risk-reducing MI counselling intervention (n = 74) or assigned to the control group (n = 99). MI skill was assessed using the Motivational Interviewing Treatment Integrity (MITI) Coding System. Seventeen of 74 (23%) women tested for Chlamydia trachomatis (CT) in the MI intervention group and 22 of 99 (22%) in the control group had a genital CT infection 0-24 months before baseline. All additional CT testing was monitored up to 24 months for all 173 women in the study. None of the 49 CT-retested women in the MI group was CT infected, as compared to 3 of 72 (4%) women in the control group. A generalized estimating equations model with sexual high-risk behaviour measured at baseline and at six-month follow-up produced an adjusted estimated odds ratio of 0.38 (95% confidence interval = 0.158, 0.909), indicating efficacy. Brief manual-based single-session MI counselling seems to be effective in reducing high-risk sexual behaviour in women at high risk of acquiring STIs.
Keywords: Chlamydia trachomatis; Europe; Motivational Interviewing; high-risk behaviour; prevention.