1. Why screen possible participants?

HOW is an intervention for women who speak English or Spanish, They could be living or at risk for HIV and who have histories of sexual and physical abuse. In a clinic setting where women seek services for their general or reproductive health or their HIV related symptoms, women need to be screened to identify who would fit the criteria for being included in the groups. Information about the following is obtained by using the HOW screener or you can insert the questions from the screener into whatever form that you use to obtain information about a woman and her background that will help you to provide the services that she needs.

2. Why is the screener important?

Using the screening questions will allow you to identify if a woman has had a history of sexual abuse before or since the age of 18 and/or if she has a history of past or current incidents where she has been or is being physically beaten, pushed, kicked or threatened to be physically abused. Most often, even though women provide information about their pastor current abuse histories, they do not consider themselves to be abuse survivors. However, if they are enrolled and in the 11 week program, they come to better understand how their past experiences influence their decisions to protect themselves or to place themselves at risk today.

The screener will also help to identify women who may not benefit from the groups because they have other problems that may get in their way of learning about how histories of violence can affect:

A. Decisions about sex with partners, and their use of condoms or;
B. Other self-protection methods to prevent pregnancies or sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

3. Who is eligible?

Women who are:

  1. Between the ages that you decide that you want the groups to be for. For example, most groups are between the ages of 18 and 64, others are between the ages of 18 and 24.
  2. HIV positive (all in one group) or at risk for becoming HIV positive.
  3. Have a history of sexual and/or physical abuse as described in #2.
  4. Speak English or Spanish
  5. Able to learn from the sessions
  6. Are willing to attend all groups
  7. Are willing to take the assessment of their behaviors and how they change over time at the baseline, after the program is complete and at any follow up period, like after 3 months have passed and the groups are complete. This is how we measure what changes the sessions may have made on their behaviors.

Women who agree to all of these criteria are accepted into the groups.

Screening Materials:

Click on the preferred language link to access each item below

  1. Screening Questions: The items below are from Planned Parenthood in New York City and an example of how they integrated the HOW screening questions into their own intake forms for care. Every woman seeking services was asked these questions and in do soing, they were able to identify women who were also eligible for enrollment into HOW groups. Screening for services and the HOW groups was accomplished at the same time.
    • English
    • Spanish
  2. Baseline Interviews
    • English
    • Spanish