The Effects of Gay- Sensitive AIDS Education on the Behavior of Homosexually Active Men
What is now needed urgently is a second-generation educational programme which is research-based and utilizes empirical data to attempt to motivate and to promote behavioural change.
Further expenditure on education alone without an adequate research base cannot reach a significantly greater number of individuals. The need for active research into preventive programmes which will motivate the practice of previously understood "safer sex" guidelines is demonstrated and is undoubtably urgent.
In response to AIDS, a number of education and counseling interventions have been developed to assist homosexually active men in changing their behavior from unsafe-sex to safer-sex techniques. At the time of the study, no research had been published on the relative efficacy of these various techniques. Since that time, one study by the Gay Men's Health Crisis, Inc, New York City, has examined some aspects of preventive education.2 Quadland and colleagues compared four different approaches to AIDS education: informing people about safer sex, informing people about AIDS in addition to safer sex guidelines, presenting safer sex in a positive and appealing manner, and presenting safer sex in a positive and appealing manner with explicit visuals. At a two-month follow-up, they found the most effective program used explicit visuals to eroticize the alternative behaviors.