Changes in Health-Promoting Behavior Following Diagnosis with HIV

Prevalence and Correlates in a National Probability Sample

Published in: Health Psychology, v. 20, no. 5, Sep. 2001, p. 351-360

Posted on on January 01, 2001

by Rebecca L. Collins, David E. Kanouse, Allen Gifford, J. Walton Senterfitt, Mark A. Schuster, Daniel F. McCaffrey, Martin F. Shapiro, Neil S. Wenger

Read More

Access further information on this document at

This article was published outside of RAND. The full text of the article can be found at the link above.

Diet, exercise, smoking, and substance use patterns affect the course of illness and quality of life for people with HIV. In interviews with a national probability sample of 2,864 persons receiving HIV care, it was found that most had made health-promoting changes in one or more of these behaviors since diagnosis. Many reported increased physical activity (43%) and improved diet (59%). Forty-nine percent of cigarette smokers quit or cut down; 80% of substance users did so. Desire for involvement in one's HIV care and information seeking-positive coping were the most consistent correlates of change. Other correlates varied by health practice but included health status, emotional well-being, demographics, and attitudes toward other aspects of HIV care. Most people with HIV improve their health behavior following diagnosis, but more might be helped to do so by targeting these behaviors in future interventions

This report is part of the RAND Corporation External publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.

Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.