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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

Saint Louis Finds Team-Based Interventions Key to Continued HIV Care

Despite tremendous advances in HIV treatment, the rates of new HIV infections have not changed in more than a decade. And, of the estimated 1.1 million people diagnosed with HIV in the United States, only 40 percent are engaged in care.

[Photo: Dr. Enbal Shacham]

How do you re-engage and retain people who have dropped out of or never received care for an HIV infection? Lead author Dr. Enbal Shacham, associate professor of behavioral science and health education at Saint Louis University’s College for Public Health and Social Justice, explored this question through the Barrier Elimination and Care Navigation Project, a five-year collaborative project in the Saint Louis metropolitan area that brought together: an HIV service organization, the city health department, an academic medical center, and a college for public health. Together, they found that individuals with HIV who had previous limited engagement in HIV care more often succeeded with a team-based approach consisting of intensive case management (including available emergency stabilization funds), peer navigation, and a community nurse.

The findings, “Enhancing Adherence to Care in the HIV Care Continuum: The Barrier Elimination and Care Navigation Project Evaluation,” were published June 2017 in AIDS and Behavior.

The paper’s co-authors are: Dr. Julia D. Lopez, department of behavioral science and health education, Saint Louis University; Ms. Tawyna M. Brown, department of infectious diseases, Washington University School of Medicine; and Ms. Kristen Tippit, and Ms. Ann Ritz, of Saint Louis Effort for AIDS.