Evaluation of an evidence-based and integrated prevention curriculum for high risk populations in Bexar County, Texas
This study represents an original and unduplicated evaluation of an evidence-based integrated prevention intervention comparing the effectiveness of an academic research institution's educators to a community-based organization's educators. The purpose of this study is to enhance current thought in high-risk preventive intervention practices by offering an academic research alternative when addressing the type of educator(s) most capable of efficient and effective education. This study evaluates the delivery of a peer modeled intervention measuring the efficiency, accuracy and effectiveness of the educators, and the behavioral and knowledge outcomes of the participants. Methods. Thirty locally developed fidelity checks were administered to assess the efficiency and accuracy of the educator's delivery of the ten-session Substance Abuse/HIV/Hepatitis curriculum. Ninety-three Bexar County Drug Court participants and their sexual partners completed baseline, exit, and follow-up questions in order to measure substance use, HIV/hepatitis, and psychosocial behavior outcomes. The same sample completed a total of ten HIV/hepatitis pre and post questions to measure knowledge outcomes. Conclusions. The results from the study suggest that there are clear differences in the educational delivery of the curriculum between the community-based educators and the academic-based research institution's educators. The academic institution's educators were found to be more likely to deliver the curriculum in a more efficient and accurate manner compared to the community-based organization's educators. Regarding behavioral outcomes, although there were no significant differences between the two agencies, a slight decrease in mean days of marijuana use was observed when the academic-based institution delivered the curriculum. Similarly, the same result was observed in terms of illegal drugs used when the community-based organization administered the education. Additionally, an experimental effect interaction showed that there was no significant change across time for all substance use and no significant effect for either agency. Regarding HIV and hepatitis knowledge outcomes, a significant increase in knowledge was observed for both agencies, although the academic-based institution revealed a higher mean score at post questionnaire than the community-based organization.