, Volume 59, Issue 1, pp 123-142
Date: 20 Apr 2013

Systematic review of HIV prevention interventions in China: a health communication perspective

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To examine whether communication strategies and principles have been utilized in the HIV prevention intervention programs conducted in China.


Comprehensive literature searches were conducted using PsycINFO, Medline, and Academic Search Complete with combinations of a number of keywords. Studies were included if they (1) were conducted in China and published prior to October 2011; (2) tested interventions promoting HIV/sexual risk reduction; and (3) reported empirical outcome evaluations on HIV knowledge, condom use and other condom-related variables. Data on 11 dimensions were extracted and analyzed, including formative research, theory, message targeting, messenger and channels, process evaluation, evaluation design, outcome measures.


The majority of the 45 intervention studies were not theory-based, did not report conducting formative research or process evaluation, used pretest–posttest control group designs, combined nonmedia channels, printed and visual materials, and employed HIV knowledge and condom use as outcome measures.


Many HIV prevention interventions in China have been successful in reducing HIV risk-related outcomes. This literature has its weaknesses; however, the current review illuminates gaps in the literature and points to important future directions for research.