While many may only associate Human Papillomavirus (HPV) with women, the virus is accountable for over 80% of anal cancer incidences in men. For men who have sex with men (MSM), such risks are estimated to be 20 times higher. Although vaccination has been shown highly effective thus recommended widely by international health organisations, local MSM show low willingness in taking HPV vaccination at the market rate. On top of limited promotion and services, prevalent stigma and marginalisation could have contributed to their reluctance.
Combining health-related interventions based on behavioural health theories, motivational interviewing and collaborating with a gay-friendly private clinic, this project aims to increase the effectiveness and sustainability of the HPV vaccination promotion service model. The team provide training for their NGO partners in engaging users of their HIV testing and counselling service, who should also be more motivated to take HPV vaccination and feel less stigmatised to be approached in such settings. These MSM would watch a short video produced by the team, and be given discount coupons so they would also invite their peers to use the service.
The project saw 20% engaged MSM taking up the service thus far. Participants are introduced to an effective prevention strategy against HPV and related diseases, who helped promoted the importance of prevention by word of mouth. The project demonstrates a transferrable service model for other NGOs.
– 25 MSM
Johnson was awarded the Early Career Award by the International Society of Behavioural Medicine in 2016. Vastly experienced in interdisciplinary behavioural health research, he was awarded eleven research grants in the capacity of Principal Investigator (PI) or co-PI. He is also the Associate Director of the Community Research Program on AIDS.
Johnson received his PhD in Public Health from CUHK.
Having published over 480 papers, Joseph is internationally recognised in the field of behavioural health and implementation science. With his interdisciplinary training and experiences, he dedicated over 20 years to HIV-related research in China. He has been the Director of AIDS Concern since 2005 and is the founding President of the Hong Kong Society of Behavioural Health. Joseph received both his PhD in demography from the University of California, Berkeley.
Phoenix is a chartered psychologist specialising in applying psychological theories to develop health promotion, particularly in the areas of HIV prevention, online support for patient empowerment, and stigma among social minorities. She is an Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society and the Hong Kong Psychological Society. Phoenix received her PhD from the University of Nottingham.