There is increased focus on HIV prevention with African men who report experiencing childhood sexual (CSA) or physical abuse (CPA).
To better understand the effects of a community-based intervention (Project Accept HPTN 043) on HIV prevention behaviors among men who report CSA or CPA experiences.
Project Accept compared a community-based voluntary mobile counseling and testing (CBVCT) intervention with standard VCT. The intervention employed individual HIV risk reduction planning with motivational interviewing in 34 African communities (16 communities at 2 sites in South Africa, 10 in Tanzania, and 8 in Zimbabwe). Communities were randomized unblinded in matched pairs to CBVCT or SVCT, delivered over 36 months. The post-intervention assessment was conducted using a single, cross-sectional random survey of 18-32 year-old community members (total N = 43,292). We analyzed the effect of the intervention on men with reported CSA or CPA across the African sites. Men were identified with a survey question asking about having experienced CSA or CPA across the lifespan. The effect of intervention on considered outcomes of the preventive behavior was statistically evaluated using the logistic regression models.
Across the sites, the rates of CSA or CPA among men indicated that African men reflected the global prevalence (20%) with a range of 13-24%. The statistically significant effect of the intervention among these men was seen in their increased effort to receive their HIV test results (OR 2.71; CI: (1.08, 6.82); P: 0.034). The intervention effect on the other designated HIV prevention behaviors was less pronounced.
The effect of the intervention on these men showed increased motivation to receive their HIV test results. However, more research is needed to understand the effects of community-based interventions on this group, and such interventions need to integrate other keys predictors of HIV including trauma, coping strategies, and intimate partner violence.