2/29/24 Grand Rounds

Moving toward behavioral health equity for underserved people


Abigail Batchelder, PhD, MPH
Director of the Behavioral Health Equity Program, Boston Medical Center;
Associate Vice Chair of Psychology, Department of Psychiatry,
BU Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine

Dr. Batchelder will present her current clinical research, focusing on the collaborative psycho-behavioral intervention development, adaptation, and implementation efforts she has led with people with HIV and substance use disorders. These projects aim to mitigate the negative consequences of stigma and shame as barriers to HIV self-care. She will also share details regarding four other related domains of work. First, she will present community engaged capacity building efforts to improve access to low threshold services for people with unmet mental health needs who use drugs with and vulnerable to HIV. Second, she will present her intervention development and implementation projects involving people aging with HIV. Third, she will share two projects that aim to improve substance use recovery programing for sexual minority and gender expansive people. Finally, Dr. Batchelder will briefly present a pilot study that aims to improve multi-modal measurement of negative self-conscious emotion, using machine learning, to inform provider interventions. Across the presentation Dr. Batchelder will emphasize the need to laterally collaborate with those we aim to serve to meaningfully intervene and improve the public health of underserved people.

Learning Objectives:
    1. Describe current psycho-behavioral strategies that aim to reach people who use drugs where they are.
    2. Identify the benefits of lateral research collaborations that equally value community members’ expertise in their lived experience.
    3. Summarize strategies to parameterize flexibility when delivering evidence-based and evidence-informed psycho-behavioral interventions to people with unmet subsistence needs and structural barriers to care.