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Cultural-Linguistic Adaptation of a Health Literacy Intervention for Hispanics

Grant Winners

  • Robin Jacobs, PhD – College of Osteopathic Medicine
  • Raymond L. Ownby, MD, PhD – College of Osteopathic Medicine
  • Joshus Caballero, PharmD – College of Pharmacy
  • Cristina Avila, BS – College of Osteopathic Medicine


  • Anthony Silvagni, DO, PharmD – College of Osteopathic Medicine
  • Andres Malave, PhD – College of Pharmacy


Award Winners

Health literacy (HL) is an important problem in improving health outcomes in patients with HIV. Antiretroviral (ARV) medications have shown to markedly suppress the virus and offered the possibility of clinical improvement and prolonged the lives of persons with HIV. However, critical factors in promoting adherence in some groups may not be the same as those among Spanish-language dominant Hispanics (SDH) with limited English-language skills. Addressing the problem of low HL in SDH with HIV may be a crucial step in improving their health. A promising strategy for providing HL interventions is automated computer-based applications. SDH face challenges to reaching optimal medication adherence. The development of e-health applications to promote HL that can be readily available on the Internet may be an effective way to address health disparities. Once created, costs for their continued deployment can be low. These applications might prove more effective if provided in a linguistically and culturally appropriate way. The goal of this proposal is to culturally-linguistically adapt an intervention, initially developed for English speaking HIV+ persons, that provides information about HIV-related matters including medication information and problem-solving skills related to medication management/adherence. The intervention based on the Information-Motivation- Behavioral Skills (IMB) model, will be culturally and linguistically adapted so it can be effectively used with HIV+ Hispanics with limited English proficiency. The proposed study will identify culturally-relevant variables that promote or hinder adherence to medications in HIV+SDH patients. These variables would be incorporated in the intervention, which will be tailored according to the patient's problem areas. The adapted computer-based automated, HL education application will then be ready for pilot testing in a future study. The application proposed is timely, innovative, and addresses the "Healthy People 2020" priority area of HL and is in concert with US Department of Health and Human Services' goal of conducting HL research.

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