Methodologies for recruitment a sample of Mexican MSM: challenges and boundaries for next trials

Published: August 1, 2008

Methodologies for recruitment a sample of Mexican MSM: challenges and boundaries for next trials

Issues: Recruitment MSM (Men who have Sex with Men) for trials, research studies and prevention intervention in Mexico it’s a hard job. MSM is a complicated population target and is troublesome to reach. Causes are multiples and diverse, frequently this kind of population (MSM), have a different lifestyle than the rest of population, related to their particular characteristics and necessities.

Description: With the aim to recruit a sample between 10-20 MSM under 25 years old, and HIV positive for a prevention intervention group, we made a different recruitment strategies, like announcements and posters in the principal venues (bars, baths, cafeterias, clinics, dark rooms, among others) of the homosexual district in Mexico City. We made specific strategies, such posters with attractive images for homosexual audience, in order to spread the information about the group. Also, we use Internet strategies, like announcement through homosexual and gay websites. Additionally, we made diffusion using traditional resources, as oral communication or “mouth by mouth”, among some MSM “seeds”. This MSM “seeds” spread the information between another MSM, for example friends, ex-lovers, relatives etc. The MSM “seed” receive a payment (US $50 per each participant guest) with the maximum of threes guests.

Lessons learned: The recruitment sample necessary was very difficult to obtain. We extend the recruitment for two weeks more, and made important diffusion. Finally we can recruit 10 MSM under 25 years old, and HIV positive. Almost all the participants found out through the posters in venues and clinics. The strategy of MSM “seed” do not contribute with any participant.

Next steps: We need improve better recruitment methodologies for reach MSM, apparently the strategies recruitment (like the use of payments) wasn’t very successful for Mexicans MSM. It’s necessary the development of new strategies and resources that take into account the social and cultural aspects of Mexican MSM.

-Abstract available at link below-

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