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J Adolesc Health. 2006 Sep;39(3):404-10. Epub 2006 Jul 10.

A brief individualized computer-delivered sexual risk reduction intervention increases HIV/AIDS preventive behavior.

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1
Center for Health/HIV Intervention and Prevention, Department of Psychology, University of Connecticut, Storrs, Connecticut 06269, USA. susan.kiene@uconn.edu

Abstract

PURPOSE:

One objective of translational science is to identify elements of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) risk-reduction interventions that have been shown to be effective and find new ways of delivering these interventions to the community to ensure that they reach the widest possible audience of at-risk individuals. The current study reports the development and evaluation of a computer-delivered, theory-based, individually tailored HIV risk-reduction intervention.

METHODS:

This study evaluated the effectiveness of a custom computerized HIV/AIDS risk reduction intervention at increasing HIV/AIDS preventive behaviors in a randomized trial with 157 college students. The intervention content and delivery were based on the Information-Motivation-Behavioral Skills Model of Health Behavior Change and used Motivational Interviewing techniques. Participants completed a baseline assessment of HIV prevention information, motivation, behavioral skills and behavior, attended two brief computer-delivered intervention sessions, and completed a follow-up assessment.

RESULTS:

As compared to the control group (a nutrition education tutorial), participants who interacted with the computer-delivered HIV/AIDS risk reduction intervention exhibited a significant increase in risk reduction behavior. Specifically, participants reported a greater frequency of keeping condoms available and displayed greater condom-related knowledge at a four-week follow-up session; among sexually active participants, there was a significant increase in self-reported condom use.

CONCLUSIONS:

Delivery of brief individually tailored HIV/AIDS risk reduction interventions via computer may be an effective HIV/AIDS prevention approach for adolescents. More research is needed to further support the effectiveness of this type of intervention and determine the generalizability of these findings to economically and educationally disadvantaged adolescents.

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