The overall goal of this K01 Award is to equip the candidate with the advanced skills needed to create an independent program of research in order to aid the development of culturally relevant HIV/STIs prevention methods and intervention strategies for Asian Pacific Islander (API) women. This award will allow the candidate to transition from proficiency in secondary analyses of existing, national, large-scale data sets to proficiency in primary data collection and qualitative research with hard-to-reach APIs. The proposed research, "API Women's Sexual Health Initiative Project" (AWSHIP) explores the relationships between depression, acculturation, family cohesion, and HIV/STIs risk behaviors among 600 young adult women (Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese) who are children of immigrants. It will also explore how these API women describe engagement in HIV/STIs risk behaviors, within the context of gender roles and disparities in relationship power. Methods include conducting a cross-sectional survey and a qualitative study, using in-depth interviews of subsample of survey participants (n=48). To conduct successful epidemiological HIV/STIs research in API communities, the candidate must undertake carefully integrated coursework and receive mentoring from senior researchers in five areas: (1) social epidemiology (Steffanie Strathdee);(2) survey research in API communities (Lena Lundgren, Frank Wong);(3) advanced quantitative analyses (Timothy Heeren);(4) qualitative methods (Lee Strunin);and (5) intervention development for API women (Mary McKay, Stanley Sue). In direct accordance with the training goals of the candidate, AWSHIP has four specific aims: (1) to characterize the epidemiology of HIV/STIs risk behaviors among API young women;(2) to understand the association between depression, acculturation, and HIV/STIs risk behaviors among API young women;(3) to determine the mediating fact ors associated with HIV/STIs risk behaviors;and (4) to explore API women's vulnerability for HIV/STIs risk behaviors in the context of gender roles and disparities in relationship power. Expertise acquired from this research will be translated into an intervention designed to decrease HIV/STIs risk behaviors among API women, which should ultimately reduce both the transmission of HIV/STIs and sexual health disparities in API communities.

Public Health Relevance

This study will provide disaggregated epidemiological data factors associated with HIV/STIs risk behaviors among Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese young women, as well as shed light on the impact of gender and relationship power on HIV/STIs risk behaviors. These findings will serve to inform the development of effective, culturally competent HIV/STIs intervention services for young API women.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Research Scientist Development Award - Research & Training (K01)
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Behavioral and Social Science Approaches to Preventing HIV/AIDS Study Section (BSPH)
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Kamath, Susannah M Allison
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Boston University
Schools of Social Work
United States
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