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Designing prenatal care messages for low-income Mexican women.

R Alcalay, A Ghee, S Scrimshaw

Public health reports (Washington, D.C. : 1974) [108:354-62] ()

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Communication theories and research data were used to design cross-cultural health education messages. A University of California Los Angeles-Universidad Autonoma in Tijuana, Mexico, research team used the methods of ethnographic and survey research to study behaviors, attitudes, and knowledge concerning prenatal care of a sample of pregnant low-income women living in Tijuana. This audience provided information that served as a framework for a series of messages to increase awareness and change prenatal care behaviors. The message design process was guided by persuasion theories that included Petty and Caccioppo's elaboration likelihood model, McGuire's persuasion matrix, and Bandura's social learning theory. The results from the research showed that poor women in Tijuana tend to delay or not seek prenatal care. They were not aware of symptoms that could warn of pregnancy complications. Their responses also revealed pregnant women's culturally specific beliefs and behaviors regarding pregnancy. After examination of these and other results from the study, prenatal care messages about four topics were identified as the most relevant to communicate to this audience: health services use, the mother's weight gain, nutrition and anemia, and symptoms of high-risk complications during pregnancy. A poster, a calendar, a brochure, and two radio songs were produced and pretested in focus groups with low-income women in Tijuana. Each medium included one or more messages addressing informational, attitudinal, or behavioral needs, or all three, of the target population.

 


Efficacy of a brief behavioral intervention to promote condom use among female sex workers in Tijuana and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.

Thomas Patterson, Brent Mausbach, Remedios Lozada, Hugo Staines-Orozco, Shirley Semple, Miguel Fraga-Vallejo, Prisci Orozovich, Daniela Abramovitz, Adela de la Torre, Hortensia Amaro, Gustavo Martinez, Carlos Magis-Rodríguez, Steffanie Strathdee

American journal of public health [98:2051-7] (2008)

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We examined the efficacy of a brief behavioral intervention to promote condom use among female sex workers in Tijuana and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. We randomized 924 female sex workers 18 years or older without known HIV infection living in Tijuana and Ciudad Juarez who had recently had unprotected sex with clients to a 30-minute behavioral intervention or a didactic control condition. At baseline and 6 months, women underwent interviews and testing for HIV, syphilis, gonorrhea, and chlamydia. We observed a 40% decline in cumulative sexually transmitted illness incidence (P = .049) in the intervention group. Incidence density for the intervention versus control groups was 13.8 versus 24.92 per 100 person-years for sexually transmitted illnesses combined (P = .034) and 0 versus 2.01 per 100 person-years for HIV (P < .001). There were concomitant increases in the number and percentage of protected sex acts and decreases in the number of unprotected sex acts with clients (P < .05). This brief behavioral intervention shows promise in reducing HIV and sexually transmitted illness risk behaviors among female sex workers and may be transferable to other resource-constrained settings.