Healthy choices: Motivational enhancement therapy for health risk behaviors in HIV-positive youth

TitleHealthy choices: Motivational enhancement therapy for health risk behaviors in HIV-positive youth
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2006
AuthorsNaar-King, S, Wright, K, Parsons, JT, Frey, M, Templin, T, Lam, P, Murphy, D
JournalAIDS Education and Prevention
Date PublishedFeb
Publication Languageeng
ISBN Number0899-9546 (Print)0899-9546 (Linking)
Accession Number16539572
Keywords*Motivation, *Risk-Taking, Adolescent, Adult, Child, Choice Behavior, Female, HIV Infections/*prevention & control, Humans, Male, Questionnaires, Substance-related disorders, United States

This study piloted a brief individual motivational intervention targeting multiple health risk behaviors in HIV-positive youth aged 16-25. Interviews about sexual behavior and substance use and viral load testing were obtained from 51 HIV-positive youth at baseline and post intervention. Youth were randomized to receive a four-session motivational enhancement intervention (N = 25) or to a wait-list control (N = 26). Of the eligible youth approached, 88% agreed to participate, and 80% percent of participants completed at least three of four sessions. The treatment group showed significantly greater reductions in unprotected sex acts and in viral load compared with controls. Although change scores for substance use were not significantly different between the two groups, paired t tests demonstrated that reductions in alcohol use and marijuana use were significant for the treatment group at the trend level. There were no significant differences in substance use from baseline to posttest for the control group. Findings demonstrate the potential of a brief motivational enhancement intervention to improve health risk behaviors in HIV-positive youth. Larger randomized clinical trials are warranted. Resources required for retention should not be underestimated.

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