Dr. Donna Futterman
Efficacy of cognitive-behavioral interventions for HIV-1 infected mothers in South Africa
(This study was funded as a supplement to our CFAR grant)
Dr. Donna Futterman, Professor of Clinical Pediatrics Einstein and Director of the Adolescent AIDS Program at MMC, is an expert in providing comprehensive care for HIV+ and at-risk youth, and HIV-1-infected and at-risk pregnant mothers. Aware of the devastating impact of HIV-1-infection in South Africa, Dr. Futterman was interested in expanding the usefulness of the cognitive-behavioral interventions that she had developed in the Bronx to International sites. She developed a collaborative effort between investigators from Albert Einstein College of Medicine, University of Cape Town and the UCLA CFAR to determine if the cognitive-behavioral intervention covering health, mental health, parenting and prevention behaviors targeting newly diagnosed HIV+ pregnant women successfully used in the Bronx would improve outcomes in these areas as compared to the current model of peer support. The research project is currently being conducted in the township of Khayelitsha in Cape Town, South Africa where the PMTCT (prevention of maternal to child transmission) program serves a population of hundreds of pregnant women with an HIV+ seroprevalence rate of 20-25%. If effective, this locally adapted program will be replicable in many of the rapidly expanding PMTCT programs throughout South Africa.