Acceptability of a Community Health Worker Program to Link High-Risk People in Jail to HIV Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis

J Health Care Poor Underserved. 2022;33(1):149-166. doi: 10.1353/hpu.2022.0012.


Background: People involved in the criminal justice system (PICJS) are at a disproportionate risk for HIV infection. Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is highly effective for HIV prevention; however, there are barriers to accessing and remaining on PrEP. We explored perspectives on partnering with a community health worker (CHW) to link PICJS to PrEP.

Methods: We interviewed PICJS (n=21) and relevant stakeholders (n=15).

Results: The following themes emerged: 1) All participants were receptive to the idea of a CHW program and believed it would be valuable; 2) the PICJS participating in the CHW program would need immediate contact post-release and continuous follow-up with the CHW; 3) desirable program components included HIV education and information about PrEP; 4) participants mentioned several facilitators and barriers to successfully implementing the CHW program; and 5) the CHW needs to be relatable.

Conclusion: Our findings suggest that a PrEP linkage program facilitated by a CHW would be desirable.

MeSH terms

  • Anti-HIV Agents* / therapeutic use
  • Community Health Workers
  • HIV Infections* / drug therapy
  • HIV Infections* / prevention & control
  • Humans
  • Jails
  • Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis*


  • Anti-HIV Agents