Appendix: Patient Interview Guide

Author(s): IHIPHRSA HIV/AIDS Bureau (HAB)

Introductory Script

[Should be modified as necessary]

Thank you for agreeing to participate in our study. Project MDAP is participating in a national study funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to improve access and the delivery of oral health care services to people living with HIV/AIDS. We are one of 15 sites across the country participating in this study. As part of this study, we are interviewing our patients to understand their attitudes, beliefs, and practices with oral health care. All your answers are completely confidential and your name will not be shared with other institutions. All narratives will be assigned a pseudonym and be combined with other narratives across the country. The information will be used to guide programs about ways to improve oral health care services for people living with HIV.

If you agree to participate, do we have permission to audiotape our interview?

We are asking participants to record interview so we can accurately capture your experience in your own words. All interviews will be transcribed and all proper names and places will be coded to protect your identity and privacy.

  1. Tell me about your experience and history of going to the dentist (prior to testing HIV-positive).
    Probes: What are the reasons you have gone in the past? [Specific probes: Did you go for regular check-ups (preventive care)? Did you go to the dentist when you had a problem or experienced pain? Were you concerned with your personal appearance?] How important has oral health care been to you (taking care of your teeth)?
  2. Tell me about your oral health care experience since testing HIV-positive.
    Probes: Is your experience with dental care providers better, worse, or the same since becoming HIV positive? Can you describe a good experience? Can you describe a bad experience? What are the reasons you have not seen a dentist? [Specific probes: Any fears? Other priorities? Treatment by dental staff? Affordability? How do you feel about the importance of oral health care? Do you have concerns about disclosure or experienced any discrimination/ poor treatment?]
  3. a. Please describe your overall quality of life.

    b. Please describe your support systems.
    Probes: Who helps you manage living with HIV? Who do you talk to when you need support or experience difficult times? Who helps you get services that you need? (i.e., do you have a case manager?)When and how often do you turn to this person for support?

    c. Please describe how any oral health problems may have affected your quality of life?
    Probes: Have oral health problems caused physical or emotional pain? Please describe. How does living with HIV affect your oral health care? Does taking medication affect your oral health problems?

  4. Since testing HIV-positive, have oral health problems affected your participation in any activities? (such as, employment, social activities, daily living). Please give examples.
    Probes: Have concerns or worries about your personal appearance affected your participation?
  5. a. Please describe your current personal oral health care practices. (How do you currently take care of your teeth and mouth?)

    b. What do you think are good personal oral health care practices (or ways to take care of your teeth and mouth)?
    Probes: Has anyone ever demonstrated to you how to take care of your teeth?

  6. What would keep you coming back as a regular patient for dental care?
    Probes: What do you like about this dental care setting? What don’t you like? What can be improved? What would help you come back for dental services? (Note: Sites can add local-specific questions).




Geographical setting:

Program setting: mobile van _____ clinic_____

community-based organization_____ Other______

Source: Adapted from the Evaluation Center for HIV and Oral Health’s SPNS Oral Health Care Initiative: Qualitative Research Study Patient Interview Guide


Interview guide for determining dental care needs of people with HIV. Chapter in Implementing Oral Health Care into HIV Primary Care Settings, presenting insights from the SPNS Innovations in Oral Health Care Initiative.

Integrating HIV Innovative Practices -- Access Training Materials