XIX International AIDS Conference

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WEPE300 - Poster Exhibition


Assessing the need for integration of alcohol treatment and HIV care: a survey of HIV and alcohol addiction treatment providers

B.T. Montague1,2, D. Squires3, S. Colby3, K. McHugh4, B. Fitzgerald5,6, D. Operario1, C.W. Kahler3, P.M. Monti3, D. Gallagher5,6, K.H. Mayer4

1Brown University Warren Alpert School of Medicine, Providence, United States, 2Miriam Hospital, Infectious Diseasese, Providence, United States, 3Brown University Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies, Providence, United States, 4Harvard, Boston, United States, 5New England AIDS Education and Training Center, Boston, United States, 6University of Massachusetts, Boston, United States

Background: Excessive alcohol use is a common problem for HIV-infected patients, and can contribute to clinical co-morbidities, cognitive decline, sexual risk behavior, and poor medication adherence. Although treatment of opioid and other drug use has been integrated into HIV care in some settings, integration of alcohol treatment has been lagging.
Methods: To better understand the needs for education related to alcohol and HIV, we surveyed 118 HIV care providers and 158 alcohol treatment providers about their attitudes and beliefs regarding existing knowledge/resources, desire for new knowledge/resources, and individual and program development needs. All questions used a 5-pt Likert scale (strongly disagree to strongly agree). HIV-provider surveys addressed alcohol addiction and treatment whereas alcohol treatment provider surveys addressed HIV-related knowledge. Subscales assessed the relative advantage of additional knowledge/resources, the compatibility of new training/resources with current practice, and the complexity of receiving training/implementing new services.
Results: Scale scores showed high internal consistency for existing knowledge and training needs (alpha > 0.8). Less consistency was noted in scales for advantage, compatibility and complexity of gaining additional training (alpha 0.6-0.8). Both HIV and alcohol providers reported weak agreement with statements of knowledge (scale scores 3.9 vs 3.8), as well as some need for training individually (scale scores 3.7 vs 3.6) and programmatically (scale scores 3.8 vs 3.6). Neither group felt increased training was a priority (mean 3.3 for both). No significant differences were noted in any scale scores.
Conclusions: To address the co-occurrence of HIV and excessive alcohol use in clinic and treatment settings, specific training related to the impact of alcohol use on persons with HIV and the potential role of alcohol treatment providers in supporting the care for persons with HIV may be important to motivate providers. Further studies are needed to clarify providers´ attitudes toward integrated HIV and alcohol treatment services.


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