A randomized trial of an education and support program for HIV-infected individuals

AIDS. 1995 Nov;9(11):1271-8. doi: 10.1097/00002030-199511000-00009.


Objectives: To assess the effectiveness of an intervention for providing information and support to HIV-positive donors on changes in their sexual behavior, and to assess which donor characteristics are predictive of behavior change.

Design: Subjects were randomly assigned to a structured intervention or community referral group. Follow-up assessments were conducted every 6 months.

Setting: New York City, New York, USA.

Participants: A cohort of 271 HIV-infected persons who donated blood to the New York Blood Center.

Intervention: Donors randomized to the structured intervention program met individually with a nurse for counseling and were offered a six-session support group. The program was designed to provide information, encourage safer sexual behavior and provide support.

Main outcome measures: Sexual behavior, psychological distress and psychological help seeking, and immune function.

Results: In both groups there was a large decrease over time in reports of unsafe sexual activity. However, more than 30% of participants in both groups reported unsafe sexual activity at the 1-year follow-up visit. Donors randomized to the structured intervention program did not report significantly more behavior change at the 1-year follow-up.

Conclusions: Better programs to promote behavior change in seropositive individuals are needed.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • New York
  • Patient Education as Topic*
  • Sexual Behavior