This study is a collaboration between CAPS and the California Prevention and Education Project (CAL-PEP) in Oakland, CA, with valuable contributions from our research consultant at Brown University. Our collaborative research team has spent the past three years developing and testing the acceptability and feasibility of the Bruthas Project, an enhanced HIV counseling intervention focused on African American men who have sex with men and women (MSMW), as part of a community collaborative research project funded by the California HIV/AIDS Research Program (CHRP). Our team works out of a shared understanding that service providers, researchers, and community members must work collaboratively to create solutions that can mitigate the spread of HIV/AIDS in the African American community.
This study rigorously tests the Bruthas Project in a randomized controlled trial, comparing the Bruthas Project to a standard program involving HIV counseling and testing, and referral to general case management services. A sample of 400 African American MSMW who do not identify as gay will be recruited from the San Francisco Bay Area. After receiving HIV counseling and testing, half will be randomly assigned to the enhanced intervention condition and half will be randomly assigned to the standard program. All participants will complete baseline, post-intervention, and three-month post intervention behavioral risk assessments using an audio computer-assisted interview (ACASI) that has been specifically developed for this population.
The Bruthas Project consists of four enhanced counseling intervention sessions:
- Session 1 – HIV testing and behavioral risk reduction counseling.
- Session 2 – Risk and dynamics with female partners.
- Session 3 – Risk and dynamics with male partners.
- Session 4 – Motivators, personal justifications and context for high risk sex