Brian Wells Pence

Brian Wells Pence

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

bpence@unc.edu
Brian Wells Pence has a Ph.D. in Epidemiology from the Gillings School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he holds a position as associate professor in the Department of Epidemiology. Dr. Pence’s research focuses on the intersection between mental health and HIV, and specifically the influence of depression and adverse life events such as childhood sexual abuse on HIV-related behaviors (such as medication adherence and risky sex) and physical health. He was the PI of the NIMH-funded SLAM DUNC trial, a randomized clinical trial designed to test whether intervening on depression in HIV patients leads to changes in HIV medication adherence and health outcomes. The algorithm-driven, medication-based depression treatment intervention employed in this study, an adaptation of the Measurement-Based Care model, is a potentially cost-effective way to facilitate more widespread integration of quality mental health care into HIV medical care. He has also worked to adapt the Measurement-Based Care depression treatment approach for use in several African countries. He hopes to use his participation in the IRI to develop a research portfolio to identify and address the barriers that prevent effective mental health interventions from being implemented in HIV clinical settings.