Safety Counts is an HIV prevention intervention for
out-of-treatment active injection and non-injection drug users aimed at
reducing both high-risk drug use and sexual behaviors. It is a
behaviorally focused, seven-session intervention, which includes both
structured and unstructured psycho-educational activities in group and
intervention works well with CDC's Advancing HIV Prevention initiative
as it strongly encourages HIV testing as a precursor to program
enrollment, clients can be recruited from testing programs, and
sessions include a discussion of the importance of testing to the
client. The intervention addresses the needs of both HIV-negative and
New Recruitment and Retention Module for Safety Counts Trainings
training on the Safety Counts intervention has a new module devoted to
recruitment and retention issues. The module provides participants with
information and strategies to effectively recruit and retain
appropriate individuals in Safety Counts. Two main recruitment
strategies are discussed - Targeted Recruitment and Peer Driven
Recruitment (based on the Respondent-Driven Sampling method). In
studies, the peer driven recruitment strategy has been found to be
particularly useful in recruiting hard-to-reach populations and a
relatively large number of participants within a short time frame. The
module also includes strategies on developing an effective retention
plan. Highly specialized trainers use small group activities, handouts,
and interactive discussion to build participants' skills in this
critical aspect of intervention implementation. A complete module in
Spanish plus a fully bilingual training are available through trainers
at CDC - funded national Capacity Building Assistance (CBA) provider
There are three ways to obtain the new Recruitment and Retention training:
now) During a regular Safety Counts training - A third day of training
has been added to the original Safety Counts training so the
recruitment and retention module can be presented. Apply for training here
now) One day face-to-face training provided by CBA Safety Counts
trainers - Technical Assistance must be requested through the CDC's CBA
Request Information System (CRIS) - www.cdc.gov/hiv/topics/cba/index.htm
soon) Online training provided by CBA Safety Counts trainers - Health
Departments and CDC directly-funded agencies must request this method
of technical assistance through CRIS - www.cdc.gov/hiv/topics/cba/index.htm
Appropriate Participants for the Safety Counts Training
strongly recommend that two staff from each agency planning to
implement the intervention attend a Safety Counts training and their
selection follow these requirements:
- The Counselor (or other
staff person) who will have primary responsibility for conducting the
Safety Counts group and individual sessions.
- The Executive
Director or Program Manager who will oversee the intervention to
facilitate agency internal capacity building and commitment to Safety
Research and Development
Rotheram-Borus, MJ., Rhodes, F., Desmond, K., Weiss, RE. (2010). Reducing HIV risks among active injection drug and crack users: the safety counts program. AIDS and Behavior, 14(3):658-68. Epub 2009 Sept. 11.
S. L., Wood, M. M., Fisher, D. G. (2003). A cognitive-behavioral
intervention to reduce HIV risk behaviors in crack and injection drug
users. AIDS and Behavior, 7, 229-243.
Rhodes, F., Wood, M.M.,
& Hershberger, S.L. (2000). A cognitive-behavioral intervention to
reduce HIV risks among active drug users: Efficacy study. In Staying
negative in a positive world: HIV prevention strategies that work (pp.
113-124). Sacramento: California Department of Health Services, Office
Rhodes, F., & Malotte, C.K. (1996). HIV risk
interventions for active drug users: Experience and prospects. In S.
Oskamp & S. C. Thompson (Eds.), Understanding and preventing HIV
risk behavior: Safer sex and drug use (pp. 207-236). Thousand Oaks, CA:
Rhodes, F., & Wood, M.M. (2000). A
cognitive-behavioral intervention to reduce HIV risks among active drug
users. In Staying negative in a positive world: HIV prevention
strategies that work (pp. 97-111). Sacramento: California Department of
Health Services, Office of AIDS.
Wood, M.M., & Rhodes, F.
(2000). A cognitive-behavioral intervention to reduce HIV risks among
active drug users: Implementation issues. In Staying negative in a
positive world: HIV prevention strategies that work (pp. 125-144).
Sacramento: California Department of Health Services, Office of AIDS.
F., Wood, M.S. (1999). A cognitive-behavioral intervention to reduce
HIV risks among active drug users. Paper presented at the 127th Annual
Meeting of the American Public Health Association, Chicago, IL.
F., Humfleet, G.L. (1993). Using goal-oriented counseling and peer
support to reduce HIV/AIDS risk among drug users not in treatment.
Drugs & Society (3/4):185-204.
Program Review Panel Information
CDC requires all CDC-funded agencies using the Safety Counts
intervention to identify, or establish, and utilize a Program Review
Panel and complete Form 0.1113 to document this activity. The
intervention researchers and developers are not involved in this
activity. This is a CDC requirement for their grantees, and all
questions in this regard should be directed to your agency's CDC
Project Officer or to the health department funding your agency's
implementation of the intervention.
The Program Review Panel guidelines, instructions for completion of Form 0.113, and the form itself are available under the Related Links section of this web site.
CDC Policy on Youth Peer Outreach Workers
CDC funded (directly or indirectly) agencies using youth (either paid or volunteer) in program outreach activities need to use caution and judgment in the venues/situations where youth workers are placed. Agencies should give careful
consideration to the "age appropriateness" of the activity or venue.
Additionally, agencies should comply with all relevant laws and
regulations regarding entrance into adult establishments/environments.
Laws and curfews should be clearly outlined in required safety
protocols developed and implemented by agencies directly and indirectly
funded by CDC.
If you have specific questions, please contact your CDC project officer.