WJA  Vol.4 No.3 , September 2014
The HIV/AIDS Helpline Is an Effective Tool of Communication
Abstract: Background and Objectives: With the evolution of mobile technology, the cell phone has become a medium of communication for all manner of diseases. So far no study has been done in India to assess the effectiveness of an AIDS Helpline and that too as a stand-alone service. The objective of this study was to determine if the callers to the HIV/AIDS Helpline found it to be an effective tool of communication. Methods: All the calls received on ASHA Foundation’s HIV/AIDS manual helpline during the period of three years from April 2009 to March 2012, were included in this study. At the end of each call, the counselor asked the caller if he found the call useful and if so why he found it useful. If the caller did not find the call useful he also needed to say why he did not find it useful. Details of each call were recorded and entered on MS excel worksheet and finally analyzed using the SPSS software package. Results: The Helpline received 4692 calls during this period of which 90.9 % calls were from males and 9.1% calls were from females. Of the 4692 calls, 38.72% were from repeat callers. Of the 2875 first time callers, 85.07% responded and said that they found the helpline useful. Responses could not be elicited from the remaining 17% as the calls were disconnected before the question could be asked. Conclusions: Callers to the helpline were mostly male; 38.7% called again. All the callers who responded said that they found the helpline useful. Thus it is an effective tool of communication and could to be used to complement advanced care in HIV/AIDS.
Cite this paper: Alexander, G. , Kanth, C. , Manoharan, P. , Maria, M. and Joseph, D. (2014) The HIV/AIDS Helpline Is an Effective Tool of Communication. World Journal of AIDS, 4, 306-310. doi: 10.4236/wja.2014.43036.

[1]   (2013) UNAIDS Global Report 2010.

[2]   (2013) NACO Website, Annual Report 2008-09.

[3]   Leggett-Frazier, N., Swanson, M.S., Vincent, P.A., Pokorny, M.E. and Engelke, M.K. (1997) Telephone Communications between Diabetes Clients and Nurse Educators. The Diabetes Educator, 23, 287-293.

[4]   Zhu, S., Tedeschi, G.J., Anderson, C.M. and Pierce, J.P. (1996) Telephone Counseling for Smoking Cessation: What’s in a Call? Journal of Counseling & Development, 75, 93-102.

[5]   Lynch, D.J., Tamburrinom, B. and Nagel, R. (1997) Telephone Counseling for Patients with Minor Depression: Preliminary Findings in a Family Practice Setting. The Journal of Family Practice, 44, 293-298.

[6]   Hughes, R.A., Carr, M.E., Huggett, A. and Thwaites, C.E.A. (2002) Review of the Function of a Telephone Helpline in the Treatment of Outpatients with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, 61, 341-345.

[7]   Reese, R.J., Conoley, C.W. and Brossart, D.F. (2006) The Attractiveness of Telephone Counseling: An Empirical Investigation of Client Perceptions. Journal of Counseling and Development, 84, 54-60.

[8]   Picciano, J.F., Roffman, R.A., Kalichman, S.C. and Walker, D.D. (2007) Lowering Obstacles to HIV Prevention Services: Effects of a Brief, Telephone-Based Intervention Using Motivational Enhancement Therapy. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 34, 177-187.

[9]   Reese, R.J., Conoley, C.W. and Brossart, D.F. (2002) Effectiveness of Telephone Counseling: A Field-Based Investigation. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 49, 233-242.

[10]   Bos, A.E.R., Visser, G.C., Tempert, B.F. and Schaalma, H.P. (2004) Evaluation of the Dutch AIDS Information Helpline: An Investigation of Information Needs and Satisfaction of Callers. Patient Education and Counseling, 54, 201-206.

[11]   Ramachandran, K., Husain, N., Maikhuri, R., Seth, S., Vij, A., Kumar, M., et al. (2007) Impact of a Comprehensive Telephone-Based Disease Management Programme on Quality-of-Life in Patients with Heart Failure. The National Medical Journal of India, 20, 67-73.

[12]   Alexander, G., Kanth, C. and Thomas, R. (2011) A Descriptive Study on the Users and Utility of the HIV/AIDS Helpline in Karnataka, India. Indian Journal of Community Medicine, 36, 17-20.

[13]   Montgomery, K., Lewis, C.E. and Kirchgraber, P. (1991) Telephone Screening for Risk of HIV Infection. Medical Care, 29, 399-407.

[14]   Capitanio, J.P. and Herek, G.M. (1999) AIDS-Related Stigma and Attitudes toward Injecting Drug Users among Black and White Americans. American Behavioral Scientist, 42, 1148-1161.

[15]   Cook, P.F., McCabe, M.M., Emiliozzi, S. and Pointer, L. (2009) Telephone Nurse Counseling Improves HIV Medication Adherence: An Effectiveness Study. Journal of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care, 20, 316-325.