The prevalence of depression and other psychiatric disorders is elevated in medical illness in general and HIV in particular.  Additionally, depression, in the context of chronic illness, is associated with worse self-care and adherence behaviors, which therefore can lead to increased morbidity.  Evidenced based psychosocial interventions can be a useful component to managing depression and self-care in the context of medical illness, and approaches used in HIV can be applied to other illnesses.  In HIV, the major self-care behaviors are adherence to daily medications and managing sexual transmission risk.  The present webinar will first review data on depression comorbid with HIV, including prevalence estimates, and data on its association with adherence.  It will then provide an overview of one studied intervention, Cognitive-behavioral therapy for adherence and depression (CBT-AD), and review data on its efficacy.  It will also discuss other approaches to managing depression in HIV, including medications, and data on the outcomes of these approaches.  It will conclude by discussion depression and additional comorbidities in individuals living with HIV who do not benefit from antiretroviral therapy. 

Learning Objectives

After completing this course participants will be able to:

  • Learn specific information about the prevalence of depression in HIV and its effect on adherence.
  • Understand the rationale and need for using integrated interventions that address both health behavior change and comorbid mental health challenges to maximize benefit in health promotion and care.
  • Learn data on outcomes of interventions that address depression and adherence to HIV treatment in diverse settings.


Steven Safren, PhD, is a clinical psychologist with expertise in health-related behavior change and a particular focus on psychosocial (mental health and substance use) comorbidities related to HIV prevention and treatment both domestically and internationally.  He earned his Ph.D. from SUNY Albany, and did internship and post-doctoral fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School.  Currently he is a Professor of Psychology at the University of Miami (UM) and the Co-Director of the UM Center for AIDS Research (CFAR) Behavioral/Social Sciences and Community Outreach Core. Before moving to the University of Miami in August 2015, he was the founding Director of the current MGH Behavioral Medicine Service at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and of the Harvard University Behavioral and Social Science Core for the Harvard University CFAR.  He has been, at the time of writing, PI or protocol chair of 15 NIH-funded grants and has authored over 275 peer-reviewed publications in his professional areas of interest.  In addition to studies where he has served as PI, he has regularly served as co-PI or mentor on studies related to HIV prevention and treatment, work with other medical illnesses, and on cognitive behavioral approaches to managing adult and adolescent ADHD.  Dr. Safren has co-authored books on CBT with LGBT individuals, integrating CBT with motivational interviewing, has an edited book on behavioral medicine interventions across various illnesses. He has co-authored two sets of published treatment manuals on CBT for treating depression and adherence in chronic illness and on treating adult ADHD respectively.  Additionally, Dr. Safren is currently the Publications Coordinator for ABCT and an Associate Editor for Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, and he has served as Editor and Associate Editor for ABCT’s clinical journal, Cognitive and Behavioral Practice.  

Licensing and Continuing Education Requirements

Evidence-Based Practice Institute (EBPI) is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to offer continuing education for psychologists. EBPI maintains responsibility for the program and its content. EBPI has allocated 1 hour of continuing education within APA guidelines for this course.  After attending the webinar, a CE certificate will be emailed to the attendee.

EBPI has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 6898. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. EBPI is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs. EBPI has allocated 1 CE Hour for this course. After attending the webinar, a CE certificate will be emailed to the attendee.

Note: Licensing and continuing education requirements vary by state. Please contact your state's regulatory authority to verify if this course meets licensing and/or continuing education requirements. You may also contact our CE department at or by calling 206-455-7934 ext. 81.

Steven Safren, PhD

This is an On-Demand course that includes a video recording and a handout of slides that accompany the talk.