Readiness to Implement HIV Testing in African-American Church Settings

Abstract HIV and AIDS continue to impact Black Americans at disproportionately high rates. Promotion of HIV testing and linkage to care is a national health imperative for this population. As a pillar in the Black community, the Black Church could have a significant impact on the promotion of HIV testing within their churches and surrounding communities. Churches, however, have varied levels of involvement in testing. Furthermore, little is known about how to assess a church’s readiness to integrate HIV testing strategies into its mission, much less how to promote this practice among churches. This qualitative study used interviews and focus groups with pastors and church leaders from four churches with varying levels of involvement in HIV testing to identify key stages in the progression of toward church-based HIV testing and linkage to care. Findings showed that churches progressed through levels of readiness, from refusal of the possibility of HIV interventions to full integration of HIV testing and linkage to care within the church.
Source: Journal of Religion and Health - Category: Medical Ethics Source Type: research

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