Faculty Profile: Curt Beckwith, MD

Curt Beckwith, MD
Associate Professor of Medicine
Medicine
Work: +1 401-793-4765
Research interests include: 1)Developing innovative HIV testing, linkage, and retention programs for vulnerable populations, particularly for persons involved with the criminal justice system; 2)Seek, Test, and Treat strategy to control the HIV epidemic; 3)Using technology to support HIV testing and counseling; 4)Clinical research related to HIV and other infections in collaboration with residents and fellows.

Biography

Curt G. Beckwith, MD is Associate Professor Medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases at the Alpert Medical School of Brown University. He conducts research on developing innovative HIV testing, linkage, and retention programs for vulnerable populations, particularly for persons involved with the criminal justice system. Dr. Beckwith is currently funded by NIDA to investigate the expansion of HIV testing among incarcerated populations. He is also working with colleagues to develop technology-based counseling tools to promote ART adherence and linkage to community HIV care for HIV-infected jail detainees through NIDA's criminal justice Seek, Test, and Treat initiative. Dr. Beckwith is co-leader of the Prisoner Health and Human Rights Scientific Program of the Lifespan/Tufts/Brown Center for AIDS Research, is the Associate Director of the Brown University Infectious Diseases Fellowship, and is an active HIV provider in Providence, RI.

Research Description

Dr. Beckwith, Associate Professor Medicine, is an infectious diseases physician with an expertise in HIV, correctional health, and linkage and retention in care. He has a background conducting research within the incarcerated setting and experience in developing and implementing HIV testing and linkage programs for incarcerated and other at-risk populations. In 2007, Dr. Beckwith received a K23 Mentored Patient-Oriented Career Development Award entitled "Comprehensive HIV Testing Strategies for Jails" from the National Institute on Drug Abuse. This award allowed him to explore the implementation of rapid HIV testing within correctional institutions using both quantitative and qualitative research methods. Dr. Beckwith also explored changes in HIV risk behaviors among persons who completed HIV testing while incarcerated. Dr. Beckwith has participated in other studies related to HIV testing among vulnerable populations. He was a co-investigator on a HRSA-funded Special Project of National Significance that expanded HIV testing in jails and enhanced linkage services to comprehensive community HIV care for HIV-infected detainees being released from jail. Dr. Beckwith was recently funded as a co-investigator on an R21 grant from the National Institute on Nursing Research in collaboration with investigators from the University of Akron and Brown University on a project that is exploring the implementation of HIV testing and counseling in domestic violence shelters.

Dr. Beckwith is currently investigating the "Seek, Test, and Treat" strategy to control the HIV epidemic, specifically among criminal justice populations. In 2010, he received a NIDA-funded R01 in conjunction with collaborators from New York University and George Washington University entitled "CARE Corrections: Technology for Jail HIV/HCV Testing, Linkage, and Care (TLC)". This project is adapting a technology-facilitated counseling tool, CARE+, for use among incarcerated populations. The new tool, CARE+ Corrections, will deliver counseling on the importance of linking to community-based HIV providers and adhering to antiretroviral medications following release from a correctional facility. CARE+ Corrections is being combined with a cellphone/SMS messaging intervention designed to deliver counseling on linkage and adherence in the community after release. This combined intervention will be evaluated in a randomized controlled trial (RCT) among 320 HIV-infected persons being released from the Washington, DC Department of Corrections jail. The RCT is scheduled to begin enrollment in September 2012. This project also has a sub-study that is investigating the feasibility and acceptability of rapid hepatitis C testing within correctional facilities. This work is being conducted in the Rhode Island Department of Corrections and Dr. Beckwith and colleagues developed a pre-testing educational video specifically for hepatitis C with funding from Gilead Sciences, Inc.

In 2012, Dr. Beckwith was funded through an administrative supplement to his NIDA R01 to investigate different approaches to HIV testing among persons recently released from the Rikers Island jail facilities in New York City in collaboration with investigators from the National Development and Research Institutes. Other activities related to the Seek, Test, and Treat strategy include being a member of the scientific advisory committee of the annual "Treatment as Prevention" conference held in Vancouver, British Columbia; and Dr. Beckwith was an author of the recently released "Guidelines for improving entry into and retention in care and antiretroviral adherence for persons with HIV: Evidence-based recommendations from an International Association of Physicians in AIDS" published in the Annals of Internal Medicine in May 2012. Dr. Beckwith has also conducted a variety of clinical research projects with residents and fellows including a case series describing patients with HIV-2 infection, and a series of studies that described the baseline characteristics and HIV-related outcomes of HIV-infected refugees in comparison to non-refugees.

Grants and Awards

1. Dean's Teaching Excellence Award, Alpert Medical School of Brown University: 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009
2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention. Partners in Public Health Improvement External Group Award, HIV Testing Implementation Guidance for Correctional Settings Group, Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention. April, 2009.

Affiliations

Fellow, American College of Physicians, 2011
Member, International Association of Physicians in AIDS Care 2011
Member, HIV Medicine Association, 2005
Member, Infectious Diseases Society of America, 2003
Member, Rhode Island Medical Society, 2002

Funded Research

Sponsored Projects with Current Funding:

1.Comprehensive HIV Testing Strategies for Jails, K23 Mentored Patient-Oriented Career Development Award from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (1K23DA021095-01A2), principal investigator

2.CARE Corrections: Technology for Jail HIV/HCV Testing, Linkage, and Care (TLC), R01 from National Institute on Drug Abuse (R01DA030747), principal investigator

3. Rapid HIV Testing and Counseling in High Risk Women in Shelters, R21 from National Institute of Nursing Research (R21NR013628-01), co-investigator.

Teaching Experience

Associate Director, Brown University Infectious Diseases Fellowship

Selected Publications

  • Hollenbeck BL, Beckwith CG. HIV-2 in Providence, Rhode Island from 2002-2011. HIV Medicine 2012. Epub ahead of print. May 10, 2012. (2012)
  • Thompson MA, Mugavero MJ, Amico KR, Cargill VA, Chang LW, Gross R, Orrell C, Altice FL, Bangsberg DR, Bartlett JG, Beckwith CG, Dowshen N, Gordon CM, Horn T, Kumar P, Scott JD, Stirratt MJ, Remien RH, Simoni JM, Nachega JB. Guidelines for improving entry into and retention in care and antiretroviral adherence for persons with HIV: Evidence-based recommendations from an International Association of Physicians in AIDS Care panel. Annals of Internal Medicine 2012; 156: 817-833. (2012)
  • Beckwith CG, Nunn A, Baucom S, Getachew A, Akinwumi A, Herdman B, DiBartolo P, Spencer S, Brown D, Lesansky H, Kuo I. Rapid HIV Testing in Large Urban Jails. American Journal of Public Health 2012; 102: S184-S186. (2012)
  • Beckwith CG, Bazerman L, Cornwall A, Patry E, Poshkus M, Fu JJ, Nunn A. An evaluation of a routine opt-out rapid HIV testing program in a Rhode Island jail. AIDS Education and Prevention 2011; 23 (3) Supplement: 96-109. (2011)
  • Zaller ND, Fu JJ, Nunn A, Beckwith CG. Linkage to Care for HIV-Infected Heterosexual Men in the United States. Clinical Infectious Diseases 2010; 52 (Supplement 2): S223-230. (2010)
  • Beckwith CG, Zaller ND, Fu JJ, Montague BT, Rich JD. Opportunities to Diagnose, Treat, and Prevent HIV in the Criminal Justice System. JAIDS 2010; 55 (Supplement 1): S49-S55. (2010)
  • Rana AI, Gillani FS, Flanigan TP, Nash BT, Beckwith CG. Follow-up care among HIV-infected pregnant women in Mississippi: A retrospective review. Journal of Women's Health 2010; 19 (10): 1863-1867. (2010)
  • Beckwith CG, Rich JD, Flanigan TP, Poshkus M, Aucoin N, Bandieri AM, Threats P, Chowdhury S, Loberti P, Minuto L, MacGowan R, Margolis A, Courtenay-Quirk C, Chow W. Routine jail-based HIV testing—Rhode Island, 2000-2007. MMWR 2010; 59:742-745. (2010)
  • Beckwith CG, Liu T, Bazerman LB, DeLong AK, Desjardins SF, Poshkus M, Flanigan TP. HIV Risk Behavior Pre- and Post-HIV Testing in Jail; a Pilot Study. JAIDS 2010; 53(4): 485-90. (2010)
  • Beckwith CG, DeLong AK, Desjardins SF, Gillani F, Bazerman L, Mitty JA, Ross H, Cu-Uvin S. HIV infection in refugees: A case-control analysis of refugees in Rhode Island. International Journal of Infectious Diseases. 2009; 13: 186-192. (2009)
  • Beckwith CG, Atunah-Jay S, Cohen J, Macalino G, Poshkus M, Rich JD, Flanigan TP, Lally MA. Feasibility and acceptability of rapid HIV testing in jail. AIDS Patient Care & STDs 2007; 21: 41-47. (2007)
  • Beckwith CG, Flanigan TP, del Rio C, Simmons E, Wing EJ, Carpenter CCJ, Bartlett JG. It's time to implement routine, not risk-based, HIV testing. Clinical Infectious Diseases 2005; 40: 1037-1040. (2005)
  • Selected publications: ()