Community Network-Driven COVID-19 Testing in Vulnerable Populations (044)

Study Information


The University of Chicago received a supplement to support the Community Network-Driven COVID-19 Testing of Vulnerable Populations in the Central US (C3) project to evaluate a COVID-19 testing approach that combines Social Network Testing Strategy (SNS) with community-developed public health messages. This study will focus on addressing misinformation, stigma, and distrust about COVID-19 testing and prevention among two populations that have been particularly hard hit by the pandemic: individuals involved in the criminal justice system who are not currently incarcerated, and low-income Hispanic or Latinx individuals. The University of Chicago will work with George Mason University to develop messages that emphasize self-affirmation and misinformation correction for implementation in the study. The study will be conducted in rural and urban sites across Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Indiana, and Illinois. The goal of this study is to address challenges of current COVID-19 testing strategies which are limited by misinformation, stigma, distrust, and limited affirmation of ability to prevent COVID-19.

This project was provided as a supplement to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) from the NIH Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics Underserved Populations (RADx-UP) program.

Study Locations: Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Texas

Grant number: U2CDA050098

Link to NIH Reporter record:

Study Team

PI: Harold Pollack, PhD, John Schneider, Mai Pho

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Study Aims

• Develop COVID-19 messages that emphasize self-affirmation and misinformation correction for implementation in SNS

• Test the efficacy (number of network members COVID-19 tested) of a combined SNS-messaging (SNS+) intervention versus standard SNS using adaptive randomization

• Evaluate C3 implementation strategies and key implementation outcomes (i.e., cost) using the RE-AIM framework

Research Type

COVID-19 Testing, RADX-UP Supplement