Last updated on December 2018

A Randomized Trial to Prevent HIV Among Gay Couples

Brief description of study

The proposed study is a randomized controlled intervention to reduce sexual risk for HIV among HIV-negative concordant and HIV discordant gay couples. There are three arms of the study: 1) the in-person experimental condition, PRIDE, 2) the online adaptation of the experimental condition, ePRIDE, and 3) the time- and attention-matched in-person control condition, Men's Health. Participants (N = 300 couples) will be randomized equally into one of the three study conditions and assessed via surveys at baseline and at 3-, 6- and 9-months after completion of the intervention sessions.

Detailed Study Description

Participants (N = 300 couples) will be randomized equally into one of the three study conditions and assessed via surveys at baseline and at 3-, 6- and 9-months after completion of the intervention sessions. All participants will complete a baseline survey, administered a fluid (swab) OraQuick HIV test, administered a viral load (VL) or PrEP adherence dry blood spot test using the HemaSpot collection device they will be randomized to one of three intervention arms, and then follow-up surveys will measure short and long term impact of the intervention at 3, 6, and 9 months.

They will first be provided with a brief overview of the study focusing on the goals of the study, randomization, participation details and timeline, and if they wish to proceed, will then be screened for eligibility. Our goal will be to screen and baseline cohorts of 30 couples (10 couples for each arm of the intervention) within a 6-week window (recruitment will be on-going).

Eligible couples will be scheduled to come into the study offices to complete a baseline survey. On arrival, couples will be informed in detail about the study and what their participation entails. Study staff will answer any outstanding questions, informed consent will be obtained, the participants will be given a fluid (swab) OraQuick rapid HIV test in a private CREGS office with HIV counseling-certified staff, then will give a DBS specimen for testing either viral load for HIV-positive participants or PrEP levels for HIV-negative participants. For consented and eligible participants, the baseline survey will then be administered and the baseline online survey will be administered on study computers.

On completion of the baseline survey and testing, couples will be randomized to one of the three arms of the study (PRIDE, ePRIDE, or Men's Health). Couples will be randomized in blocks with the block size randomly permuted via a SAS computer program based on a pseudo-random number generator. Each arm of the intervention will begin on the same date and run for two weeks. Couples randomized to ePRIDE will be sent a link on the same day that PRIDE and Men's Health sessions are scheduled and will have two weeks to complete the program. Access to ePRIDE will be deactivated at the end of two weeks.

Participants who have a positive test result for HIV during the baseline visit will be given their results by HIV counseling-certified staff and referred for free confirmatory testing at our nearby partner, Alliance Health Project clinic, where they will also receive clinical care and support services. If the newly HIV-positive person is in a relationship with a confirmed HIV-positive partner, they will be considered ineligible. If the partner is HIV-negative, they will be eligible to participate in the study.

Short and long term impact of the intervention will be measured at 3-, 6- and 9-months post completion of the intervention. Follow-up surveys for all three arms will be administered online in-person at the downtown CREGS offices. Couples will be sent a link to the survey with a unique identification number and password and will have 7 days to complete each survey; reminders will be sent every two days contacted and scheduled to come in together to complete follow-up surveys on provided computers. Couples who take fail to come in and complete follow-ups longer than 7 days will be flagged so differential outcomes can be assessed as needed and their link to the survey will be disabled after 14 days.

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT03189394

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