Technology-Delivered Mental Health Interventions for People Living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA): a Review of Recent Advances

Mirjam Colette Kempf, Chao Hui Huang, Robert Savage, Steven A. Safren

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


HIV/AIDS infection and psychiatric diagnoses are closely linked, with an estimated 50 % of HIV-infected individuals diagnosed with co-occurring mental health disorders. Mental health disorders have been shown to be associated with HIV acquisition as well as poor treatment outcomes for those infected with HIV. Therefore, behavioral interventions to improve HIV/AIDS health outcomes have included interventions addressing mental health co-morbidities, such as depression and anxiety, and the use of technology to facilitate such intervention is growing. The current review focuses on research published between January 2011 and April 2015, exploring technology-based interventions aimed to improve health outcomes among HIV/AIDS individuals with co-occurring mental health symptoms. Technologies identified in this review included telephone-delivered and computer-delivered interventions. Despite rapid advances in technology use in the medical professions, particularly in the area of psychiatric treatment, little has been translated into the area of mental health research in the context of HIV disease. This review reveals that the widespread dissemination of various technologies, especially technologies facilitating access to care among vulnerable and marginalized populations, may be a necessary way to offer evidence-based mental health interventions to HIV/AIDS populations in need.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)472-480
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent HIV/AIDS Reports
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015


  • Mental health
  • People living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA)
  • Technology-based intervention
  • Telemedicine
  • Telepsychiatry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases


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