Improving the counselling skills of lay counsellors in antiretroviral adherence settings: a cluster randomised controlled trial in the Western Cape, South Africa

SOURCE: AIDS and Behavior
OUTPUT TYPE: Journal Article
PUBLICATION YEAR: 2015
TITLE AUTHOR(S): S.Dewing, C.Matthews, N.Schaay, A.Cloete, L.Simbayi, J.Louw
KEYWORDS: ANTIRETROVIRAL THERAPY, COUNSELLING SERVICES, HIV/AIDS, WESTERN CAPE PROVINCE
DEPARTMENT: HIV/AIDS, STIs and TB (HAST)
Print: HSRC Library: shelf number 8469

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Abstract

Little research has investigated interventions to improve the delivery of counselling in health care settings. We determined the impact of training and supervision delivered as part of the Options: Western Cape project on lay antiretroviral adherence counsellors' practice. Four NGOs employing 39 adherence counsellors in the Western Cape were randomly allocated to receive 53 h of training and supervision in Options for Health, an intervention based on the approach of Motivational Interviewing. Five NGOs employing 52 adherence counsellors were randomly allocated to the standard care control condition. Counselling observations were analysed for 23 intervention and 32 control counsellors. Intervention counsellors' practice was more consistent with a client-centred approach than control counsellors', and significantly more intervention counsellors engaged in problem-solving barriers to adherence (91 vs. 41 %). The Options: Western Cape training and supervision package enabled lay counsellors to deliver counselling for behaviour change in a manner consistent with evidence-based approaches.