Computer-assisted data collection can help improve data validity

Much has been written about the challenges of social desirability bias in self-reported measures. In order to alleviate this, our study team is using computer-assisted interviewing to survey our MAISHA study participants. We are using computer tablets that are equipped with audio computer-assisted self interview (ACASI) software. With an ACASI modality, our team is able to automate and administer questions to our study participants. The program runs on the tablets by presenting questions and response options visually and audibly. Participants then are able to select their preferred response using the touch screen, and data are saved directly into our data collection system. The questions and response options were pre-recorded in Swahili at Duke University’s Multimedia Project Studio by Godfrey Kisigo and Charity Agasaro.

Study team members Godfrey Kisigo (right) and Charity Agasaro (left) recording assessment questions and response options in Swahili for the ACASI program
Study team member Ismail Amiri listening to the recordings and completing the ACASI survey on the tablet




Congratulations Haika and Linda!

We are excited to announce Haika Osaki as our new study coordinator and Linda Minja as our new assistant coordinator for the Maisha study! Haika joined our team in April 2019 and has taken charge of the day to day activities for the stigma reduction intervention. She has a background in Sociology (BA), Public Health (MPH) and has been vital to our research operations. Linda serves as an assistant statistician at Kilimanjaro Clinical Research Institute (KCRI) and as a data manager on the Maisha study. She has worked with our team since the start of the Option B+ project. She has a background in quantitative modeling and has ensured that the data collected is accurate and complete. Congratulations, Haika and Linda! We appreciate your hard work.


Haika (left) and Linda (right) pose for a picture at KCRI. 

The Maisha Pilot Trial Has Started Enrolling!

Enrollment has begun! Today marks the first day of enrollment for the Maisha pilot trial at the Pasua and Majengo clinics. Women and their partners attending a first antenatal care appointment will be recruited, consented and enrolled in the study. We hope to enroll a total of 1,000 women and 500 male partners in a period of 8 months. Our incredible research assistants at each site will be responsible for this endeavor.

The Pasua Clinic where women and their partners will be enrolled

It’s a wrap! Maisha video ready for its intervention debut!

The Maisha intervention video is up and running! Thanks to an incredible team of actors, the video is now available for session 1 of the MAISHA intervention study. The Maisha video aims to dispel misconceptions that drive HIV stigma while normalizing pregnancy in the context of a positive HIV status. In this 7 minute film, we are introduced to Salma, who learns that she is HIV positive in the wake of her first antenatal care visit. Salma and her husband, Bahati, go through the motions of this diagnosis and show viewers what it means to be pregnant and living with HIV. The Maisha video, presented to all Maisha participants, aims to develop empathy and encourage support for people living with HIV.

Actors film the Maisha video for the study