Pre-release Intervention

Inmate peer educators were trained to provide a single session personalized risk reduction intervention to inmates within 2 weeks of their release. The pre-release session is designed to reduce HIV risk behavior by increasing condom use and avoiding needle sharing after release from prison, or by other strategies generated in the participant’s individualized risk reduction plan. This program was evaluated and found to be effective in increasing condom use after release from prison. (Grinstead O, Zack B, Faigeles B, Grossman N, Blea L. Reducing post-release HIV risk among male prison inmates: a peer-led intervention. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 1999, Vol. 26, p. 453-465)

Program Outline

Two weeks prior to release, inmates are invited to a one-hour meeting with an inmate peer educator. At that time they work together to assess the participant’s risk behavior and contexts (individualized risk assessments) and to develop an individualized risk reduction plan.

Intervention Guideline for Peer Educators

_____ 1. Inmate peer educator explains the program, who he is and why he is there.
_____ 2. What is your release situation:
a. What county?
b. Do you have a place to stay?
c. Do you have a job?
_____ 3. What is your relationship status?
a. One sexual partner? A lot of partners?
b. Has your main partner been tested? How about your other partners?
c. Review condom skills and discuss access to condoms.
_____ 4. Do you inject drugs? Have you ever been in treatment for drugs or alcohol?
a. Do you plan to stop using after release? If yes, make drug treatment referral.
b. Make referral to a needle exchange program.
c. Review needle hygiene skills.
_____ 5. Do you know about the HIV antibody test?
a. Make referrals for testing, if needed.
b. Make referrals for care if HIV+.
_____ 6. Review level of basic HIV/AIDS knowledge and transmission risks; provide information as needed.
_____ 7. Provide specific suggestions for risk reduction based on the the inmate’s post-release plans and situation.
_____ 8. Give participant the Services Referral Guide for their county. Service guides were county-specific brochures describing HIV care and prevention and other services available in each county.

Last modified: February 7, 2011