BACKGROUND:Despite persistent calls for HIV care to adopt a chronic care approach, few HIV treatment services have been able to establish service arrangements that prioritise self-management. To prevent cardiovascular and other chronic disease outcomes, the HealthMap program aims to enhance routine HIV care with opportunities for self-management support. This paper outlines the systematic process that was used to design and develop the HealthMap program, prior to its evaluation in a cluster-randomised trial. METHODS:Program development, planning and evaluation was informed by the PRECEDE-PROCOEDE Model and an Intervention Mapping approach and involved four steps: (1) a multifaceted needs assessment; (2) the identification of intervention priorities; (3) exploration and identification of the antecedents and reinforcing factors required to initiate and sustain desired change of risk behaviours; and finally (4) the development of intervention goals, strategies and methods and integrating them into a comprehensive description of the intervention components. RESULTS:The logic model incorporated the program's guiding principles, program elements, hypothesised causal processes, and intended program outcomes. Grounding the development of HealthMap on a clear conceptual base, informed by the research literature and stakeholder's perspectives, has ensured that the HealthMap program is targeted, relevant, provides transparency, and enables effective program evaluation. CONCLUSIONS:The use of a systematic process for intervention development facilitated the development of an intervention that is patient centred, accessible, and focuses on the key determinants of health-related outcomes for people with HIV in Australia. The techniques used here may offer a useful methodology for those involved in the development and implementation of complex interventions.