Examining the efficacy of a computer facilitated HIV prevention tool in drug court

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Background: Although they have demonstrated efficacy in reducing substance use and criminal recidivism, competing priorities and limited resources may preclude drug court programs from formally addressing HIV risk. This study examined the efficacy of a brief, three-session, computer-facilitated HIV prevention intervention in reducing HIV risk among adult felony drug court participants. Methods: Two hundred participants were randomly assigned to an HIV intervention (n = 101) or attention control (n = 99) group. All clients attended judicial status hearings approximately every six weeks. At the first three status hearings following study entry, clients in the intervention group completed the computerized, interactive HIV risk reduction sessions while those in the control group viewed a series of educational life-skill videos of matched length. Outcomes included the rate of independently obtained HIV testing, engagement in high risk HIV-related behaviors, and rate of condom procurement from the research site at each session. Results: Results indicated that participants who received the HIV intervention were significantly more likely to report having obtained HIV testing at some point during the study period than those in the control condition, although the effect was marginally significant when examined in a longitudinal model. In addition, they had higher rates of condom procurement. No group differences were found on rates of high-risk sexual behavior, and the low rate of injection drug reported precluded examination of high-risk drug-related behavior. Conclusions: The study provides support for the feasibility and utility of delivering HIV prevention services to drug court clients using an efficient computer-facilitated program.

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Drug and alcohol dependence





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This article was published in Drug and Alcohol Dependence, Volume 162, Issue 1, Pages 44-50.

The published version is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2016.02.026 .

Copyright © 2016.

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