Innovative, culturally-appropriate models of care are necessary to engage special populations in HIV testing, care, outreach and prevention services. In 2004, the Health Resource and Services Administration (HRSA)’s HIV/AIDS Bureau, Program of Special Projects of National Significance (SPNS) funded eight demonstration sites to identify, implement and evaluate innovative programs to provide outreach, care and prevention to engage HIV-positive young men of color who have sex with men.
As one of eight demonstration sites, the Los Angeles County Office of AIDS Programs and Policy and the HIV Epidemiology Program have developed “Young Men Taking Charge” (YMTC), a unique adaptation of care and prevention services designed to bring HIV-positive African American and Latino young men into care The program consists of identifying and linking HIV-positive young men to an integrated case management (ICM) intervention, a clinic-based, youth-focused case management model, to assist youth in accessing and maintaining clinical care services at the 2 demonstration sites.
- To determine if a youth-focused case management program helps HIV-positive YMSM stay in HIV care;
- To evaluate changes in risk behaviors and HIV disease; and,
- To increase the capacity of the OASIS and AltaMed Clinics to provide services for HIV-positive youth in their communities.
This five-year study will use a pretest-posttest design to evaluate whether a youth-focused case management model improves engagement and retention in HIV care. A total of 60 African-American and Latino MSM ages 13-24 with a positive HIV test result referred to one of two demonstration sites: the OASIS Clinic at the Martin Luther King-Harbor Medical Center or AltaMed Health Services HIV Clinic. All clients will participate in the intervention for two years and will complete baseline and quarterly follow-up surveys. In addition, medical record chart reviews will be conducted for all clients to obtain data on viral loads, CD4 counts, antiretroviral therapy and opportunistic infections.
For more information about the other demonstration sites and this SPNS initiative, please go to:
Amy Rock Wohl, Ph.D., Principal Investigator
Wendy Garland, M.P.H., Project Coordinator
Rosa Valencia, B.S., Research Assistant