Recruitment and Retention of Women Living With HIV for Clinical Research: A Review

Kyra Jennifer Waligora Mendez, Joycelyn Cudjoe, Sarah Strohmayer, Hae Ra Han

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Women are underrepresented in HIV clinical research. However, there has not been a review on how to effectively recruit and retain women living with HIV in research. The purpose of this review is to describe recruitment and retention methods and factors associated with research participation among women living with HIV in the U.S. We searched PubMed, CINAHL, and Google and synthesized studies using thematic analysis. The most common method of recruiting women with HIV into research was through community-based HIV clinics, and the greatest yield was from word of mouth and a university HIV research center. Attrition may occur early and can be addressed by focusing on retention as early as study planning. Barriers to research participation for women can be addressed through retention methods discussed. We conclude that building relationships with community members and women living with HIV, being flexible, and implementing many methods is important for recruitment and retention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3267-3278
Number of pages12
JournalAIDS and behavior
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2021


  • Clinical research
  • Minority populations
  • Recruitment
  • Retention
  • Women living with HIV

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases


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