Cohort II
2017 - 2019

Ana María del Río-González | Mariano Kanamori Nishimura
Julie Levison | Claudia Martinez

 
 

Julie Levison

Julie Levison, MD, MPhil,
Harvard Medical School

CFAR Mentor:
Margarita Alegria, PhD
   (Harvard CFAR)

Collaborating Partner:
Carmen Rios
   (Boston Healthcare for the Homeless)

Community Intervention for Retention in Care for HIV-infected Latino Immigrants

HIV-infected Latino migrants/immigrants who are men who have sex with men (MSM) and those with substance use disorders (SUD) are key populations at risk for inconsistent HIV primary care attendance. Yet there are no evidence-based interventions to support retention in HIV care in these Latino sub-groups therefore motivating this proposal. As a bilingual (English-Spanish) physician-investigator, my long term career goal is to address socio-cultural and behavioral barriers to HIV care for vulnerable populations focusing on Latinos.

The current proposal builds on my National Institute of Mental Health (K23) award. The K23 has laid the groundwork for a novel community health worker (CHW) intervention to improve retention in HIV care for Latino migrants/immigrants in Boston and is centered around a Spanish language video novela that we developed and is the first of its kind focused on living with HIV as a Latino. The intervention follows from a conceptual model based on my pilot research and accumulating evidence that interactive health technology may improve health attitudes and effect behavioral change for Latinos.

Given the specific health service needs of Latino MSM and SUD populations, we propose that detailed feedback from HIV-infected Latino migrants/immigrants who are MSM or those with SUD would provide critical information to tailor the format and content to these high-risk Latino sub-populations.

I propose two aims:
Aim 1: To adapt a novel CHW intervention to improve retention in HIV care for HIV-infected Latino migrants/immigrants who are MSM and those with SUD in the Greater Boston area.

Aim 2: To pilot test the adapted intervention to improve retention in HIV care in HIV-infected Latino migrants/immigrants who are MSM and those with SUD.

Through this work I aim to advance the research priorities of the National Institutes of Health and the White House Office of National AIDS Policy to address disparities in HIV outcomes in racial/ethnic minorities. This training and research opportunity will also support an R01 submission of a larger randomized trial and develop my long-term goals to become an expert in community-engaged HIV research in Latino populations.


• FUNDING:
   NIH RePORT list of Dr. Levison's NIH grants
Not all of which have devolved from her Adelante project


• PUBLICATIONS:
   PubMed list of Dr. Levison's Adelante publications