In the News
A culturally based approach may help prevent HIV in partners. Heterosexual African American couples in which one partner is HIV-positive adopt safer sexual behaviors after completing an intervention program that incorporates Eban, a "traditional African concept meaning 'fence,' a symbol of safety, security, and love within one's family" and relationships. According to a report in the September 27 Archives of Internal Medicine, couples in the intervention group reported more frequent condom use and fewer unprotected sexual acts, compared with control couples at 12-month follow-up. The eight-week Eban-based classes taught skills to reduce sexual risk, including condom use, communication, and monogamy. Couples in the control group learned about general health behaviors like improving diet and exercise and adherence to HIV medication regimens. The results of this study suggest that the Eban-based intervention "may be scaled up to curb the magnitude and continued spread of HIV and other [sexually transmitted diseases]," write the authors.