HIV Research Study Needs Interested Adults Who Drink

Research Center: Syracuse University’s Psychology and Health Lab
Location: All research activities are via telephone or Zoom-based video
Lead Researchers: Sarah Woolf-King, PhD, MPH and Stephen Maisto, PhD
IRB Committee: This study has been reviewed and approved by the Syracuse University Institutional Review Board

About the Study

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is essential for people with HIV. Researchers at Syracuse University are interested in seeing if a brief mindfulness-based intervention can help people living with HIV who drink alcohol. If the intervention is successful, it may help people make changes in their alcohol use, cope with stress in healthy ways, and improve HIV treatment-related outcomes. The results of this research study will also be used to create an innovative alcohol intervention for people living with HIV, which has the potential to reduce alcohol use, enhance HIV care, and reduce the risk of onward HIV transmission.

Why Participate? 

  • Participants will receive treatment for alcohol use for people living with HIV at no cost.
  • Participants may experience improvements in their mental health, alcohol use, overall quality of life, and lesser need for healthcare involvement. 
  • Participants will be contributing valuable information that may benefit those with HIV in the future.
  • Participants will be compensated up to $330 for participating in this study. Compensation will only be provided to eligible participants who complete the study.
  • Participants will be helping to advance HIV-related research.

Your Rights

  • If you decide to participate in the study and later feel that you no longer wish to be part of it, you can withdraw at any time.
  • Any information that you provide will be kept strictly confidential, except as required by law.

Who Can Participate?

  • Adults aged 18 and above who are diagnosed with HIV by a medical professional
  • Must be receiving antiretroviral therapy (ART) for HIV
  • Must drink alcohol
  • Must be able to complete 6 telephone sessions over a 6-week period and 4 follow-up appointments over 10 subsequent months.

Any information provided will be kept confidential and will only be used for the purposes of this research study.

Key Study Details 

The study team can explain the research study in its entirety but some study details are:

  • Participants will be asked to complete questionnaires about their mental and physical health via telephone or Zoom-based visits. 
  • Participants will be asked to attend 6 telephone sessions.
    • These sessions will either teach them mindfulness-based skills and strategies to manage their well-being and alcohol use or discuss their current alcohol use and help them develop a plan for reducing their alcohol intake.
    • Telephone sessions will last for approximately 30-45 minutes. 
  • Participants will be asked to attend telephone or Zoom-based follow-up appointments that will last 60-90 minutes. There will be follow-up appointments that will occur immediately post-treatment and again 3, 6, and 12 months after their first study visit. 
  • Participants will be asked to collect fingernail samples, hair samples and collect 5 drops of blood after each study visit (excluding treatment sessions).

About the Research Center:

Syracuse University’s Psychology and Health Lab

The Psychology and Health Lab is affiliated with the Department of Psychology at Syracuse University. The overarching goal of the research conducted in their lab is to inform the development of behavioral and psychological interventions that enhance the well-being of populations affected by substance use and chronic medical conditions. The majority of their work focuses on alcohol and other substance use, sexual behavior that increases risk for HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, and behavioral aspects of HIV treatment and prevention. They work with college students, sexual and gender minorities, people living with HIV, and people who drink alcohol at levels that increase risk for the development of alcohol use disorder. They also have an emerging line of research focused on the mental health needs of parents of children affected by congenital heart disease (CHD). All of the studies in the Psychology and Health lab have transitioned to remote data collection in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Please note:
Due to the current situation with the COVID-19 pandemic, the study team would like to point out that this study will be conducted remotely, which will allow you to participate in the comfort of your own home and have no close interactions with any person outside of your household.

What’s Next?

  1. Click the link to enter your contact details and take the study questionnaire.
  2. If eligible, a member of the research team will contact you to discuss the study and answer any questions you may have.
Click Here to Check Your Eligibility for This Study