Recruiting and Retaining High-Risk Adolescents into Family-Based HIV Prevention Intervention Research

Chisina T. Kapungu, Carla M. Nappi, Charu Thakral, Steven A. Miller, Catharine Devlin, Cami McBride, Emily Hasselquist, Gloria Coleman, Derek Drozd, Chinmayee Barve, Geri Donenberg, Ralph DiClemente, Larry Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of this study was to examine the effectiveness of evidence-based recruitment and retention strategies for a longitudinal, family-based HIV prevention intervention study targeting adolescents in psychiatric care by (1) determining consent rate (recruitment), rate of participation at the first intervention session (retention), and follow-up attendance rate (retention); and (2) examining socio-demographic factors, family-level processes, sexual risk-related indices, and intervention factors (i.e., treatment arm) associated with study retention. Only one-third of the families contacted ultimately enrolled in the study. 81% of those enrolled participated in the workshop and 72% attended the booster sessions with no significant differences between families on any variable based on attendance. Retention over 1 year was 85% and did not differ by treatment arm. Strategies employed were successful at retaining families once they were enrolled. Findings highlight barriers to enrollment for adolescents in psychiatric care and suggest that it may be critical to integrate HIV prevention programs within community-based mental health services in order to counteract recruitment challenges.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)578-588
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Child and Family Studies
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2012


  • Adolescents
  • Family-based research
  • HIV prevention
  • Recruitment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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