Brief Venue Survey of HIV Risk Places and Use of Technology in the Baltimore Latino Population

Post Date: 
2010-12-14
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Countries: 
Summary: 

This study ended December 13, 2011.

In the last ten years, Baltimore City has seen a doubling in the AIDS incidence rate among Latinos. This has been paralleled by a doubling of the Baltimore Latino population over the last five years. At the Baltimore City Health Department (BCHD), Latino patients tend to present late in the course of their HIV infection. Therefore, in 2008, to improve access to timely HIV diagnosis and care among Latinos, BCHD established a Latino Outreach Program that expanded the capacity to provide culturally-appropriate outreach services to the Latino population of Baltimore City. Foreign-born status has been shown to correlate with lower levels of knowledge of HIV/AIDS and also with shorter time interval from HIV diagnosis to AIDS. The objective of this study is to explore knowledge of HIV-related risk behaviors and use of technologies that could be used for HIV/STD education in the Latino population in Baltimore. In this study we will partner with the BCHD Latino Outreach Program to administer face-to-face surveys in Spanish or English to assess use of technology and knowledge of locations associated with HIV risk behaviors, such as men who have sex with men (MSM) and use of commercial sex workers (CSWs). The results of this study will lay the foundation for designing possible interventions to these structural determinants of risk behaviors, such as conducting HIV testing at venues identified as sites of high-risk behaviors (such as MSM and CSWs) and providing HIV and STD education and testing information through different technologies. Venues identified by this exploratory survey will also be evaluated further for use in future venue-based sampling research studies focused on recruiting Latinos at high risk for acquiring HIV.  The current questionnaire will also be used to determine whether eligible participants interested in completing a longer survey can be accessed in sufficient numbers at different venues. 

Objectives:

To investigate the use of technology by the Latino population in Baltimore

  • Identify the frequency of cell phone, text messaging, Internet, and email usage to determine which methods could be used for future educational purposes.

To investigate knowledge of HIV risk behaviors and sites where these behaviors occur in Baltimore

  • Assess knowledge of Latino use of CSWs and locations for meeting CSWs.
  • Assess awareness of Latino MSM and locations for meeting MSM partners. 

To investigate past HIV testing, interest in future testing, and preferred locations for testing.

  • Assess when and where participants were previously tested and where they would prefer to go for future testing.
  • Assess interest in using a home-testing kit for HIV or other STDs.

To determine the feasibility of future research surveys

  • Identify attractive incentives and willingness to participate in longer surveys about HIV risk factors in the future