Life Enhancement Counseling With HIV-Infected Hispanic Gay Males

Silvia Kaminsky, William Kurtines, Olga O. Hervis, Nancy T. Blaney, Carrie Millon, Jose Szapocznik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Life Enhancement Counseling (LEC) is a systemic intervention that has been adapted and refined for use in enhancing the quality of life of HIV-infected persons. LEC makes use ofpreexistingfamilial/socialnetworks and supports in order to mobilize HIV-infected persons into biopsychosocial support (medical, psychological, and formal and informal social support), and also utilizes psychosocial and therapeutic strategies tailored to the individuals'personal and cultural frame of reference. In this article the authors report on the utility of LEC in working with HIV-infected Hispanic gay males. The work presented derives from an ongoing research study that is experimentally investigating the effectiveness of LEC in enhancing the quality of life in HJV-infected gay men in terms of both immediate and long-term impact. Clinical and culturally relevant observations gleaned from this work are presented briefly, e.g., the tendency among Hispanic gay men to rely almost exclusively on their family of origin for emotional support, and the tendency for increased over-protection and over-involvement within the family systems of our Hispanic HIV-infected subjects. This approach represents an e-xtension of prior work, briefly presented in this article, using intervention strategies proven to be effective with Hispanics presenting a variety ofproblems. Consequently, this article presents and describes LEC's theoretical underpinnings -systems, structure and strategy, and basic therapeutic techniques -joining, diagnosis, and restructuring. Finally, a case example is presented illustrating the application of Life Enhancement Counseling with an HIVinfected Hispanic gay manm.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)177-195
Number of pages19
JournalHispanic journal of behavioral sciences
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Anthropology
  • Linguistics and Language


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