Publication Details

Pettifor, A., MacPhail, C., Nguyen, N., Rosenberg, M., Parker, L. & Sibeko, J. (2014). Feasibility and acceptability of Project Connect: A couples-based HIV-risk reduction intervention among young couples in Johannesburg, South Africa. AIDS Care: psychological and socio-medical aspects of AIDS-HIV, 26 (4), 476-482.


Given the importance of couples to the transmission of HIV, interventions focusing on both members of a partnership can play an important role in its prevention. We adapted and pilot-tested Project Connect, an evidence-based HIV prevention intervention for couples, to determine its acceptability and feasibility among a sample of young urban South African couples. We recruited couples from a clinic in inner-city Johannesburg to take part in the study. Interviewer-administered questionnaires were conducted at baseline and postintervention; an in-depth interview (IDI) was also conducted postintervention. Of 75 couples screened, 15 were eligible and enrolled. An important reason for ineligibility was a recent history of intimate partner violence (IPV). Couples attended, on average, five of the seven sessions. Overall, the intervention was acceptable and showed signs of potential efficacy. Couples reported enjoying Connect and feeling comfortable with its content. Participants also reported learning important communication and problem-solving skills, which resulted in more effective engagement in HIV prevention behaviors. However, the number of sessions and strict eligibility criteria proved challenging to the feasibility of the study. We recommend future couples' interventions have fewer sessions and enroll couples with a history of IPV.



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