Intervention Methods

In order to advance its mission, SIG uses several different types of intervention methods such as digital, microfinance, and couple based.

Digital Intervention

Defined as the integration of text, audio, video, still images, animation and interactivity, multimedia has become ubiquitous as an innovative method to enhance learning.  The Social Intervention Group develop, test and disseminate prevention programs that integrate multimedia to best meet adult learning needs as well as to prepare for rapid scale up efforts for widespread access. Research has shown that  digital intervention has been an effective way of disseminating information and improving active learning by:

  • Interactive games with high speed graphics to increase attention
  • Four characters (fictional role models) are used throughout the sessions to increase emotional engagement and facilitate positive peer norms
  • Use of storytelling by the four characters
  • Modeling of core skills by the fictional characters is followed by role play to increase intention and motivation to use skills
  • Individual activities are recorded in an electronic log that participant may or may not share with group, which ensures confidentiality
  • Electronic journal logs allow participants to systematically track and document progress

To See Some of our Multimedia Videos click here

Related Projects: Wings, Worth, and Multimedia Connect

Microfinance

Several studies have shown microfinance to be an effective structural HIV prevention strategy for women engaged in sex work (Odek et al., 2009; Pronyk et al., 2008; Pronyk et al., 2006; Erulkar et al., 2006; Sherman et al., 2006; Cordisco-Tsai, et al., 2011). Under Social Intervention Group leadership, investigators at the Global Heath Research Center are pioneering new models for combining microfinance with HIV prevention and other health risk outcomes.  Undarga, our first model, tested an asset-based model for microfinance for women engaged in sex work in Mongolia. The model is sensitive to the unique needs of women engaged in sex workers, who are stigmatized and often unable to gain access to traditional financial institutions, by providing financial literacy training prior to business development trainingand by providing matched savings to build assets towards business development.

 

Couple-Based Interventions

For the past 20 years, SIG has focused on advancing innovative couple-based interventions that are designed to address dyadic HIV risk behaviors, substance use, and intimate partner violence. SIG’s couple-based interventions aim to strengthen couple communication and negotiation skills, problem solving skills and risk reduction goal setting to enable both partners together to work on these shared co-occurring problems.  SIG’s first couple-based intervention,  Project Connect, was designed to reduce HIV risks among low income couples in primary care. Project Connect has been included in CDC’s short list of evidence-based HIV prevention intervention.  SIG has adapted and tested couple-based HIV prevention interventions in randomized controlled trials among HIV-negative, drug using couples in New York (Connect II) ; African American HIV serodiscordant couples (Eban) injecting drug users and their heterosexual partners in Kazakhstan (Renaissance) and African American MSM who use metamphetamines (Connect and Unite). SIG has recently conducted an implementation trial to test the effectiveness of training  providers in 80 HIV treatment or prevention agencies to deliver Connect using a multimedia format compared to the traditional format.