Advancing HIV Prevention Intervention Research With MSM
This meeting is a by invitation only event.
Background: According to the most recent CDC surveillance data, HIV incidence rates among MSM continue to rise, with minority MSM bearing a disproportionate burden of the epidemic in the United States. Since the beginning of the HIV epidemic, the MSM community has taken action to promote HIV testing, condom use, and, more recently, specific sexual behaviors, such as serosorting, to reduce HIV transmission risk. However, recent studies suggest that there may be prevention fatigue around messaging that emphasizes condom use. Despite significant efforts by researchers and community members, there remains a need for novel intervention directions, to address the prevention needs of MSM, particularly African-American MSM and younger MSM. There is a growing acknowledgement of the health disparities among MSM; minority MSM face intersecting disparities associated with sexual orientation and ethnicity. For those MSM living in non-urban communities in the United States, there is the disparity in access to HIV prevention and resources.
The NIMH and CDC partnered to hold a satellite meeting at the National HIV Prevention Conference to address the HIV prevention needs of MSM living in the United States. The intention of the meeting is to address the prevention needs of a diverse group of MSM, broadly defined to include gay-identified, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men. A group of researchers and community members will discuss a research agenda that will provide clear prevention messages and innovative multilevel interventions that are acceptable to the MSM community, and that account for complex social, structural, and developmental factors that contribute to ongoing HIV infections. Such advances will provide MSM the best opportunity to protect themselves and their sexual partners. The majority of the meeting presentations and discussion will focus on research gaps in designing risk-reducing and sexual health-promoting interventions for MSM, as well as addressing the broader needs of MSM, including interventions to address mental health, substance use, disclosure, and stigma.The meeting will open with an overview talk that paints the epidemiologic picture of HIV infection among MSM in the United States. While many of the meeting attendees will be familiar with the CDC surveillance data, the data will serve to provide the large framework for the remaining presentations and discussions. The surveillance data serve not only to help us consider the “risk groups” to target among MSM broadly, but also to remind the group that in some areas of the United States, among some groups of MSM, the background community incidence and prevalence rates make it difficult to adequately address the epidemic with individual or group-level interventions.