Identifying and Matching Individuals’ Preferences for HIV/AIDS Counseling and Testing (IMPACT)

Project Summary: 

HIV counseling and testing (HCT) is a cost-effective intervention for increasing HIV serostatus awareness, a point of entry into HIV care and treatment, and an important means of primary and secondary HIV prevention. In Tanzania, despite the widespread availability of varied HIV testing options, fewer than one-third of men and women ages 15-49 have tested during the previous 12 months. There is an urgent need to understand and address key deterrents of HIV testing uptake. HIV testing options vary with respect to many characteristics, including, but not limited to, characteristics of testing venues (e.g. home, workplace, health facility), test administration (e.g. finger prick, venipuncture, oral swab), and counselors (e.g. gender, experience). HIV testing preferences may also vary based on perceptions of confidentiality, accuracy, and past testing experiences. We previously demonstrated that a Discrete Choice Experiment (DCE) is a robust tool for characterizing how diverse characteristics of HIV testing options influence testing preferences. This study extends the use of the DCE method to systematically identify feasible HIV testing options that match the preferences of two high-risk populations, and evaluates whether a preference-informed HCT intervention increases rates of testing.

In this multi-year study taking place in Moshi, Tanzania, we will conduct a form of stated preference survey research called Discrete Choice Experiments (DCEs), to rigorously quantify HIV testing preferences among two high-risk populations, identify their preferred testing options, and evaluate, in a community-based trial, the effect of a preference-based HIV counseling and testing (PB-HCT) intervention on HIV testing uptake. Qualitative work (focus groups, in-depth interviews) may be used to complement quantitative work to develop the DCE surveys and interpret the results.

Key Staff: Nathan Thielman (co-PI), Jan Ostermann (co-PI), Amy Hobbie, Andrew Weinhold

Grant Details:

Funder: National Institute of Mental Health, R01MH106388.

Project period: 5/1/2015 – 4/30/2020