AIDS and Behavior

, Volume 20, Issue 9, pp 1919–1927 | Cite as

Abriendo Puertas: Feasibility and Effectiveness a Multi-Level Intervention to Improve HIV Outcomes Among Female Sex Workers Living with HIV in the Dominican Republic

  • Deanna KerriganEmail author
  • Clare Barrington
  • Yeycy Donastorg
  • Martha Perez
  • Noya Galai
Original Paper


Female sex workers (FSW) are disproportionately affected by HIV. Yet, few interventions address the needs of FSW living with HIV. We developed a multi-level intervention, Abriendo Puertas (Opening Doors), and assessed its feasibility and effectiveness among a cohort of 250 FSW living with HIV in the Dominican Republic. We conducted socio-behavioral surveys and sexually transmitted infection and viral load testing at baseline and 10-month follow-up. We assessed changes in protected sex and adherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART) with logistic regression using generalized estimating equations. Significant pre-post intervention changes were documented for adherence (72–89 %; p < 0.001) and protected sex (71–81 %; p < 0.002). Higher intervention exposure was significantly associated with changes in adherence (AOR 2.42; 95 % CI 1.23–4.51) and protected sex (AOR 1.76; 95 % CI 1.09–2.84). Illicit drug use was negatively associated with both ART adherence and protected sex. Abriendo Puertas is feasible and effective in improving behavioral HIV outcomes in FSW living with HIV.


HIV Sex workers Multi-level intervention Multi-level intervention Viral suppression Protected sex STI 



We would like to acknowledge the women who participated in the Abriendo Puertas cohort and intervention. Their time and dedication made this work possible. We would also like to thank all the research and intervention team members from IDCP, MODEMU and COIN for their commitment, skill and enthusiasm. This Research to Prevention (R2P) project was supported by USAID|Project SEARCH, Task Order No. 2, funded by the US Agency for International Development under Contract No. GHH-I-02-07-00032-00, beginning 30 September 2008, and supported by the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief. The Johns Hopkins University Center for AIDS Research, 1P30AI094189, provided additional support.

Author Contributions

DK and CB conceptualized the overall study design and jointly led the manuscript writing, with DK taking the lead on first drafts of each section. YD and MP led all fieldwork for the study and contributed to analysis plan and write up of findings. NG led all statistical analyses and contributed to the writing of the methods and results.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflicts of Interest

The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Deanna Kerrigan
    • 1
    Email author
  • Clare Barrington
    • 2
  • Yeycy Donastorg
    • 3
  • Martha Perez
    • 3
  • Noya Galai
    • 1
    • 4
  1. 1.The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public HealthBaltimoreUSA
  2. 2.The University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public HealthChapel HillUSA
  3. 3.Instituto Dermatologico y Cirugia de la PielSanto DomingoDominican Republic
  4. 4.Department of StatisticsThe University of HaifaMt CarmelIsrael

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