The Medical College of Wisconsin's ( MCW ) Center for AIDS Intervention and Research has received a two-year, $420,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health's National Institute on Aging to determine the factors among older, rural HIV-positive adults that contribute to that group's mortality rates.
Andrew Petroll, MD, MS, associate professor of medicine and psychiatry and behavioral medicine at MCW, is the primary investigator of the grant. Dr. Petroll sees patients with HIV at Froedtert Hospital.
HIV-positive adults who live in rural areas suffer from greater mortality than non-rural HIV-infected individuals, and face unique challenges to maintaining good health. Some of those challenges include transportation, social isolation, increased stigma, and lack of access to expert HIV care and case management. Additionally, as the population of HIV-positive adults ages, those factors become even more critical in maintaining good health outcomes.
In this project, Dr. Petroll will first conduct in-depth interviews with 40 HIV-positive adults over the age of 50 who lives in rural areas of the US. Those data will be utilized to construct a survey to measure the prevalence of factors affecting perceived quality of life. In the next phase of the study 400 HIV-positive adults over the age of 50 in rural areas will be surveyed.
"This project will yield data which is of great public health significance, as it will demonstrate the needs of this population of US HIV-positive individuals that currently suffer from greater mortality. We are hopeful that this project will serve as a basis from which to develop interventions to improve health outcomes and reduce health disparities for this population," said Dr. Petroll.
The Center for AIDS Intervention Research at MCW is one of five HIV prevention research centers in the United States funded by the National Institute of Mental Health. CAIR's missions are to conceptualize, conduct, and scientifically evaluate the effectiveness of new intervention strategies to prevent HIV infection in populations vulnerable to the disease. CAIR's research also develops improved strategies to promote health and alleviate adverse mental health consequences among persons living with HIV. CAIR is committed to disseminating its findings both to the scientific community and to public health providers so they benefit from Center research.
This project is funded by NIH R21AG048675-01A1.
About the Medical College of Wisconsin
The Medical College of Wisconsin is the state's only private medical school and health sciences graduate school. Founded in 1893, it is dedicated to leadership and excellence in education, patient care, research and community engagement. More than 1,200 students are enrolled in MCW's medical school and graduate school programs in Milwaukee. New regional medical education campuses are scheduled to open in Green Bay in 2015, and in Central Wisconsin in 2016, with each recruiting initial classes of 20-25 students. A major national research center, MCW is the largest research institution in the Milwaukee metro area and second largest in Wisconsin. In FY 2013-14, faculty received approximately $154 million in external support for research, teaching, training and related purposes, of which approximately $138 million is for research. This total includes highly competitive research and training awards from the National Institutes of Health ( NIH ). Annually, MCW faculty direct or collaborate on more than 2,000 research studies, including clinical trials. Additionally, more than 1,350 physicians provide care in virtually every specialty of medicine for more than 425,000 patients annually.