AIDS and behavior 2017 04 27() doi 10.1007/s10461-017-1780-z
HIV patients who are not retained in medical care risk viral resistance, disease progression to AIDS, and mortality. Numerous interventions have been tested to improve retention, but they are limited by their resource-intensive approaches and lack of focus on new patients, who are at highest risk for drop-out. Data show that acceptance and disclosure of HIV status might impact retention, yet these variables have not been targeted in previous interventions. In this pilot randomized controlled trial, we assessed feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary efficacy of a brief, 2-session acceptance based behavior therapy (ABBT), relative to treatment-as-usual (TAU), in 34 new-to-care HIV patients. ABBT attendance was high and patient feedback was positive. Relative to TAU, ABBT had significant positive effects on retention, as well as putative mechanisms of action, including experiential avoidance of HIV, willingness to make and actual disclosures of HIV status, and perceived social support. Further testing of ABBT is warranted. Trial registered at clinicaltrials.gov; Clinical Trial #NCT02004457.