For Immediate Release

September 28, 2007

New York, NY – Dr. Rogério M. Pinto, Assistant Professor at the Columbia University School of Social Work, has received a 5-year, Research Development Award (K01) from the National Institute of Mental Health. Entitled “Promoting Community Collaboration in HIV Research,” this award will be used for a study to examine the factors that influence HIV-related service providers in New York City to form research partnerships and to collaborate with HIV prevention researchers. Dr. Pinto will refine and test a model of collaboration that will inform and promote partnerships in HIV prevention research in at risk communities.

While the science of HIV prevention has generated effective HIV prevention interventions and translated them into user-friendly programs, many Community Based Organizations (CBOs) remain hesitant to provide them to clients. Prevention providers have difficulty accessing information and transferring interventions from experimental to community settings, primarily due to time, funding, and expertise-related constraints. As a result, many at risk individuals may receive less effective interventions. In order to diffuse such programs in communities at risk, researchers need to understand better what makes service providers more or less inclined to adopt HIV prevention programs and to offer them to consumers. Researcher partnerships with CBOs are thus essential if community members – consumers of social and medical services in CBOs across the country – are to benefit from HIV prevention approaches.

“To ensure community acceptability of HIV prevention research – including dissemination, translation, adaptation, and adoption of interventions – researchers and policy makers need to engage in all phases of research with providers who actually deliver HIV prevention interventions. It is not enough, and it may be unproductive, to engage service providers only at the point of adoption,” says Dr. Pinto. “By identifying important factors that influence provider collaboration in HIV prevention research, we will better be able to develop models of collaborative research and to draw relationships between factors that influence collaboration. This will lead to strategies for collaborative research that can be successfully replicated internationally.”

For more information or to interview Dr. Pinto, please contact Jeannie Hii at 212-851-2327 or jy2223@columbia.edu.

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