HIV prevention interventions which support engagement in care and increased awareness of biomedical options, including pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), are highly desired for disproportionately affected Black/African American, Hispanic/Latinx and gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (GBMSM) populations in the United States (US). However, in almost 40 years of HIV research, few interventions have been developed directly by and for these priority populations in domestic counties most at risk. We submit that interventions developed by early-career scientists who identify with and work directly with affected subgroups, and which include social and structural determinants of health, are vital as culturally tailored HIV prevention and care tools.
We reviewed and summarized interventions developed from 2007 to 2020 by historically underrepresented early-career HIV prevention scientists in a federally funded research mentoring program. We mapped these interventions to determine which were in jurisdictions deemed as high priority (based on HIV burden) by national prevention strategies.
We summarized 11 HIV interventions; 10 (91%) of the 11 interventions are in geographic areas where HIV disparities are most concentrated and where new HIV prevention and care activities are focused. Each intervention addresses critical social and structural determinants of health disparities, and successfully reaches priority populations.
Focused funding that supports historically underrepresented scientists and their HIV prevention and care intervention research can help facilitate reaching national goals to reduce HIV-related disparities and end the HIV epidemic. Maintaining these funding streams should remain a priority as one of the tools for national HIV prevention.