Evaluation of the Effectiveness of HIV Voluntary Counseling and Testing Trainings for Clinicians in the Odessa Region of Ukraine
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In Ukraine, only 28 % of HIV-infected individuals are aware of their HIV status. Expansion of voluntary HIV counseling and testing (VCT) in primary and specialty health care settings holds promise for increasing the number of people who know their HIV status and can access care. To build capacity among health care providers to deliver VCT, we conducted two-day trainings on basic HIV knowledge and on VCT procedures in the Odessa region of Ukraine. The training program was developed by local trainers in collaboration with faculty from the US Southeast AIDS Training and Education Center and was delivered in the clinical settings where trainees worked (n = 392). We assessed training effectiveness in terms of change in knowledge among clinician trainees, comparing HIV specialists and nonspecialists and those working in urban and rural clinical settings. All else being equal, compared with their urban HIV-specialist peers, trainees who were rural nonspecialists demonstrated significantly greater increases in general HIV knowledge scores. This effort demonstrates that brief, on-site training programs support the expansion of VCT by increasing the knowledge and skills of rural nonspecialist clinicians to levels equal with urban HIV specialists.
KeywordsHIV Voluntary counseling and testing VCT Provider training Ukraine
Financial support for this project was received from Geneva Global, Inc. (US). Partners of the project in Ukraine were: Odessa Regional Health Care Department, Odessa Regional AIDS Center, Odessa Regional Substance Abuse Clinic. The authors are grateful for the time and input of Dianne Weyer, MS, FNP-BC, who volunteered and delivered the training for trainers in Odessa. Dr. Kiriazova received support through the University of California, San Francisco, from the following grants: from the US National Institutes of Health (NIH), through the Fogarty International Center (FIC) D43TW005799 and the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) P30 MH062246 and R25MH064712; through the FIC AIDS International Training and Research Program (AITRP) D43TW000003; and through the Starr Foundation. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of NIH, NIMH, or FIC.
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