The study, which appeared this month in the journal Health Psychology, found that by offering an experimental introduction to a counseling session, public health institutions could increase enrollment by a significant amount.
Previous research by Albarracín found that those most likely to engage in behavior that puts them at a high risk for HIV are also the least likely to enroll and stay in HIV intervention programs.
Therefore the researchers studied the effects of delivering different messages to participants screened for high-risk behavior as an invitation to a counseling program delivered at the Alachua County Health Department in Gainesville, Fla. They found one message that increased enrollment among participants.
All the messages informed participants who had signed up for a generic health study that they could speak to a HIV-prevention counselor. In the experimental condition, they were also told that the counseling session was not intended to change their behavior, only to provide them with the most current information. Compared with a message that indicated that the counseling increased condom use, recipients of the experimental message enrolled at a rate higher by 15 percent. This effect was particularly strong when participants had no intention of using condoms at the beginning of the study.
“This kind of research has tremendous public health implications,” Albarracín said.
“Public health experts around the world are regularly in search of the most effective methods for curbing preventable health problems,” she said. “HIV is a disease caused by a number of risky behaviors like unsafe sex and unsafe needle sharing, but health information is often disseminated without complete knowledge of how it will be received by audiences,” she said.
“The research indicates that people will be more receptive to information when they don't believe they are trying to be influenced,” Albarracín said. “This approach will be helpful in giving public health professionals effective ways to introduce the public to information without repulsing those they are trying to help most.”
Other researchers involved in the study were Marta R. Durantini, Allison Earl, and Josh Leeper, of the University of Florida, and Joann B. Gunnoe of the Alachua County Health Department.
Editor’s note: To reach Dolores Albarracin, call 217-244-7019; e-mail: email@example.com.
Matthew Freeman | University of Illinois
Innovative genetic tests for children with developmental disorders and epilepsy
11.07.2018 | Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel
Oxygen loss in the coastal Baltic Sea is “unprecedentedly severe”
05.07.2018 | European Geosciences Union
For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.
To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...
For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.
Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...
Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.
A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...
Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.
"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....
Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.
Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...
13.07.2018 | Event News
12.07.2018 | Event News
03.07.2018 | Event News
19.07.2018 | Earth Sciences
19.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering
19.07.2018 | Materials Sciences