Study protocol: a pilot randomised waitlist-controlled trial of a dyadic mobile health intervention for black sexual-minority male couples with HIV in the USA
Published Web Locationhttp://doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2021-055448
HIV care engagement is lower among black sexual-minority men relative to other racial/ethnic groups of sexual-minority men. Being in a primary relationship is generally associated with more successful HIV care engagement across various populations. However, among black sexual-minority men, the association between primary relationship status and HIV-related outcomes is inconsistent across the HIV care continuum. Given the ubiquity of mobile technology access and use among racial/ethnic minority communities, leveraging mobile technology for HIV care engagement appears a promising intervention strategy. This paper outlines the protocol of the LetSync study, a pilot randomised controlled trial of a mobile health app intervention developed using the Framework of Dyadic HIV Care Engagement to improve care-engagement outcomes among black sexual-minority male couples living with HIV.
Eighty black sexual-minority men in couples (n=160) will be enrolled to pilot test the LetSync app. At least one member of each dyad must be both HIV-positive and self-identify as black/African-American. Couples will be randomised to either a waitlist-control arm or an intervention that uses relationship-based approach to improve HIV care engagement. We will assess feasibility and acceptability of trial procedures and intervention protocols based on predefined metrics of feasibility and acceptability. Execution of the study will yield the opportunity to conduct analyses to test the measurement and analysis protocol on antiretroviral therapy adherence by comparing the intervention and waitlist-control arms on self-reported and biological (hair sample) measures of adherence.
Study staff will obtain electronic consent from all participants. This study has been approved by the University of California (UCSF) Institutional Review Board. Study staff will work with the Community Advisory Board at the UCSF Center for AIDS Prevention Studies Board to disseminate results to participants and the community via open discussions, presentations, journal publications and/or social media.