I’m thrilled to share that my HIV research partner, Rebecca Dillingham, and I have been named the 2020 Innovators of the Year by the University of Virginia’s Licensing and Ventures Group. This award is for our work on our platform to help people living with HIV to achieve optimal clinical outcomes, called PositiveLinks.
For the last few years, I’ve spent a few weeks in June in Thohoyandou, Limpopo, South Africa with a team of American students helping the University of Venda (UNIVEN) School of Health Sciences and the District Health office to integrate MI skills into health care.
As in the U.S., chronic health conditions are highly prevalent in South Africa, and are typically managed in nurse-led clinics and by local community health workers.
Last year, I was fortunate to lead a team of 6 UVA and 6 UNIVEN students as we conducted MI training for community health workers in two clinics, then observed them in the field as they tried to integrate MI skills into their work with patients.
This year, I took a UVA medical student, future Dr. Susan Gutierrez, and worked again with the 6 UNIVEN nursing students (Hope Skolo, Zandie Sibeko, Marshall Ndou, Tshilidzi Nema Rola, Awelani Matidza, and Mphonyane Makhumisane) and beloved colleague Mary Maluleke to implement 5 days of MI training, with pre and post standardized patient interactions, to help nursing students and professional nurses to learn MI skills.
At the end of the first day of training, one of the professional nurses emphatically stated: “We should have had this training 20 years ago! All nurses should learn MI!”
Job well done, my beloved team.
In early July I traveled up to our nation’s capitol to work with the Senior Executive Leadership Team at the Community Services and Offender Supervision Agency (CSOSA) on how to use MI to skillfully lead teams. This team is committed to an inspiring vision of humane treatment and fostering growth among staff and among clients. I came back energized and excited!
I’m looking forward to the first week of June, when will be training with a dedicated group of counselors in Georgia who are using PRI’s Solutions intervention. These clinicians will be practicing their MI skills and learning about MI Groups. I’ll be co-training again with Chris Wagner, along with David Rosengren and Larry Walton of PRI.
Last week in Williamsburg, Steve Clarke gave a daylong workshop on using brief interventions with college students, with great information on how colleges can consider what services they may need in the context of what they already have. I followed this up with a daylong workshop on BASICS skills, with about 1/2 of the day focusing on the 4 processes of MI and the second half on specific BASICS implementation skills. This coming week, we’ll be on the road again, this time in Fredericksburg. In October, we’ll do it again in Amherst. These workshops are FREE. To find out more, or to register, check it out here.