Evidence-based HIV prevention in community settings: provider perspectives on evidence and effectiveness

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As part of the efforts to expand evidence-based practice (EBP) in HIV prevention at the community level, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) created the Diffusion of Effective Behavioral Interventions (DEBI) program. Frontline service providers, who are charged with adopting and implementing these interventions, however, have resisted and criticized the dissemination of evidence-based HIV prevention interventions. Their failure to implement the interventions with fidelity and abandonment of plans to implement interventions in which they were trained have often been discussed from the framework of 'capacity-building'. This framework points to 'deficits' within community-based organizations (CBOs) that impede the uptake of EBP. This article presents the perspective of 22 frontline service providers from CBOs (n = 8) in a Midwestern state on their experiences with the DEBI program, and illustrates the reasons providers may not implement EBP. Analysis of interview responses reveals that providers cite diverse reasons - beyond organizational capacity - for lack of implementation with fidelity. Specifically, they offer critiques of the DEBI program based on the models of evidence of effectiveness on which it is based.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)73-84
Number of pages12
JournalCritical Public Health
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • HIV prevention
  • effectiveness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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