Lessons from the fields: A migrant HIV prevention project

H. Virginia McCoy, Wayway M. Hlaing, Emma Ergon-Rowe, Deanne Samuels, Robert Malow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Migrant and seasonal workers are vulnerable to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) due to poverty, inadequate knowledge of preventive strategies, and lack of access to health care. This study addresses the disparate impact of HIV among Hispanic and African American migrant workers in Immokalee, Florida, who use alcohol and other drugs. Through pilot testing to adapt the experimental and comparison interventions to these two distinct populations, research staff have learned the importance of (1) establishing and maintaining trust between outreach staff and the migrant community; (2) being aware of cultural nuances and practices that might create challenges to the research process, and the interaction of these factors with poverty; and (3) having flexibility in recruitment and intervention. As one of the first intervention studies in this population to use an experimental design and to focus on the social and contextual factors that contribute to risky behaviors, these lessons may provide guidance for future researchers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)790-796
Number of pages7
JournalPublic health reports
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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