RESIDENTIAL STATUS AND HIV RISK BEHAVIORS AMONG PUERTO RICAN DRUG INJECTORS IN NEW YORK AND PUERTO RICO1*
ABSTRACT This article investigates the association between residential status and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) risk behaviors among island and New York Puerto Rican injection drug users (IDUs). We assigned 561 subjects from New York City and 312 from Puerto Rico to five residential status categories: living in parent's home, living in own home, living in other's home, living in temporary housing (hotel, single-room occupancy [SRO] hotels), and homeless (living in streets/shelters). Dependent variables included injection- and sex-related risk behaviors (sharing syringes, sharing other injection paraphernalia, shooting gallery use, and having paid sex). Chi square, t tests, and multivariate logistic analysis tests were performed separately by site. About one-quarter of the sample in each site was homeless. Island Puerto Ricans were more likely to live with their parents (44% vs. 12%, p <. 001), and more New York IDUs lived in their own home (30% vs. 14%, p <. 001). In New York, gallery use and paid sex were associated with living in other's home, living in parent's home, and being homeless. Sharing paraphernalia was related to living in other's home, living in temporary housing, and being homeless. In Puerto Rico, having paid sex was associated with homelessness. High-risk behaviors were more likely among homeless IDUs in both sites. Programs to provide housing and target outreach and other prevention programs for homeless IDUs would be helpful in reducing HIV risk.
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ABSTRACT: High rates of substance dependence are consistently documented among homeless people, and are associated with a broad range of negative outcomes among this population. Investigations of homelessness among drug users are less readily available. This study examined the prevalence and correlates of housing instability among clients of needle syringe programs (NSPs) via the Australian NSP Survey, annual cross-sectional seroprevalence studies among NSP attendees. Following self-completion of a brief, anonymous survey and provision of a capillary blood sample by 2,396 NSP clients, multivariate logistic regressions identified the variables independently associated with housing instability. Nineteen percent of ANSPS participants reported current unstable housing, with primary ('sleeping rough'; 5 %), secondary (staying with friends/relatives or in specialist homelessness services; 8 %), and tertiary (residential arrangements involving neither secure lease nor private facilities; 6 %) homelessness all evident. Extensive histories of housing instability were apparent among the sample: 66 % reported at least one period of sleeping rough, while 77 % had shifted between friends/relatives (73 %) and/or resided in crisis accommodation (52 %). Participants with a history of homelessness had cycled in and out of homelessness over an average of 10 years; and one third reported first being homeless before age 15. Compared to their stably housed counterparts, unstably housed participants were younger, more likely to be male, of Indigenous Australian descent, and to report previous incarceration; they also reported higher rates of key risk behaviors including public injecting and receptive sharing of injecting equipment. The high prevalence of both historical and current housing instability among this group, particularly when considered in the light of other research documenting the many adverse outcomes associated with this particular form of disadvantage, highlights the need for increased supply of secure, affordable public housing in locations removed from established drug markets and serviced by health, social, and welfare support agencies.Journal of Urban Health 01/2013; · 1.89 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Latinos in the United States are an ethnically diverse group disproportionately affected by HIV/AIDS. We describe HIV seroprevalence, HIV risk behaviors and utilization of health services among Mexican American injection drug users (IDUs) in California (n = 286) and compare them to White (n = 830) and African American (n = 314) IDUs. Study participants were recruited from syringe exchange programs (n = 24) in California. HIV seroprevalence among Mexican Americans (0.5%) was dramatically lower than Whites (5%) and African Americans (8%). Mexican Americans reported fewer sex-related risks than Whites and African Americans though injection-related risks remained high. Compared to Whites, Mexican Americans were more likely to participate in drug treatment during a 6 month period (AOR 1.5, 95% CI 1.1, 2.0) but less likely to receive any health care (AOR 0.6, 95% CI 0.5, 0.8). Exploring cultural and structural factors among Mexican American IDUs may offer new insights into how to maintain low rates of HIV seroprevalence and reduce barriers to health care utilization.AIDS and Behavior 12/2009; 15(1):95-102. · 3.49 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Abstract Recent studies have reported a clustered pattern of high-risk drug using and sexual behaviors among younger injection drug users (IDUs), however, no studies have looked at this clustering pattern in relatively older IDUs. This analysis examines the interplay and overlap of drug and sexual HIV risk among a sample of middle-aged, long-term IDUs in Houston, Texas. Our study includes 452 eligible IDUs, recruited into the 2009 National HIV Behavioral Surveillance project. Four separate multiple logistic regression models were built to examine the odds of reporting a given risk behavior. We constructed the most parsimonious multiple logistic regression model using a manual backward stepwise process. Participants were mostly male, older (mean age: 49.5±6.63), and nonHispanic Black. Prevalence of receptive needle sharing as well as having multiple sex partners and having unprotected sex with a partner in exchange for money, drugs, or other things at last sex were high. Unsafe injecting practices were associated with high-risk sexual behaviors. IDUs, who used a needle after someone else had injected with it had higher odds of having more than three sex partners (odds ratio (OR)=2.10, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.40-3.12) in last year and who shared drug preparation equipment had higher odds of having unprotected sex with an exchange partner (OR=3.89, 95% CI: 1.66-9.09) at last sex. Additionally, homelessness was associated with unsafe injecting practices but not with high-risk sexual behaviors. Our results show that a majority of the sample IDUs are practicing sexual as well as drug-using HIV risk behaviors. The observed clustering pattern of drug and sexual risk behavior among this middle-aged population is alarming and deserve attention of HIV policy-makers and planners.AIDS Care 10/2012; · 1.60 Impact Factor