Sherry Deren

City University of New York - York College, New York, New York, United States

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Publications (124)242.02 Total impact

  • Sherry Deren · Susan Tross ·

    Substance Use &amp Misuse 09/2015; 50(8-9):1171-3. DOI:10.3109/10826084.2015.1010833 · 1.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Available evidence suggests that young former Soviet Union immigrants are a vulnerable group with high prevalence rates of nonmedical prescription opioid and heroin use, injection drug use and injection-related risk behavior, placing them at risk for HCV/HIV infection, overdose and associated harms; this group has been the focus of little research, however. This paper reports on quantitative and qualitative data collected from 80 former Soviet immigrants (ages 18-29) to characterize their opioid use trajectories, injection risk behavior, HCV/HIV testing histories and self-reported HCV/HIV serostatus, and provides clinically meaningful data that may inform tailored education, prevention and harm reduction interventions.
    Journal of Addictive Diseases 07/2015; 34(2-3). DOI:10.1080/10550887.2015.1059711 · 1.46 Impact Factor

  • Drug and Alcohol Dependence 01/2015; 146:e263. DOI:10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2014.09.181 · 3.42 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We agree with the recommendations made by Lopez et al. to address contextual factors influencing the high rates of HIV among Puerto Rican people who inject drugs (PRPWID). We note that a recent publication from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), published after completion of our original article, described progress along the continuum of HIV care for Hispanics,(1) identifying the ongoing health disparities among people who inject drugs (PWID). The CDC report found that among those Hispanics who were HIV-infected, linkage to care and viral suppression were lower among those whose HIV infection was attributed to injection drug use than among those with infection attributed to other risk factors. As shown in our previous article, Puerto Ricans are overrepresented among Hispanic PWID. This further supports the need for coordinated public health efforts to target this vulnerable population to reduce HIV infection (e.g., enhanced access to clean syringes and to drug abuse treatment) and to address disparities along the HIV care continuum. (Am J Public Health. Published online ahead of print November 13, 2014: e1. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2014.302409).
    American Journal of Public Health 11/2014; 105(1):e1. DOI:10.2105/AJPH.2014.302409 · 4.55 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: High levels of HIV risk behaviors and prevalence have been reported among Puerto Rican people who inject drugs (PRPWID) since early in the HIV epidemic. Advances in HIV prevention and treatment have reduced HIV among people who inject drugs (PWID) in the United States. We examined HIV-related data for PRPWID in Puerto Rico and the US Northeast to assess whether disparities continue. Injection drug use as a risk for HIV is still overrepresented among Puerto Ricans. Lower availability of syringe exchanges, drug abuse treatment, and antiretroviral treatment for PWID in Puerto Rico contribute to higher HIV risk and incidence. These disparities should be addressed by the development of a federally supported Northeast-Puerto Rico collaboration to facilitate and coordinate efforts throughout both regions. (Am J Public Health. Published online ahead of print September 11, 2014: e1-e7. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2014.302114).
    American Journal of Public Health 09/2014; 104(11):e1-e7. DOI:10.2105/AJPH.2014.302114 · 4.55 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: For Latinas with fasting plasma glucose (FPG) levels in the prediabetes and diabetes ranges, early detection can support steps to optimize their health. Data collected in 2009–2010 indicate that 36.7% of Latinas in the United States had elevated FPG levels. Latinas with elevated FPG who were unaware of their diabetes status were significantly less likely than non-Hispanic White and non-Hispanic Black women to have seen a health care provider in the past year (75.8%, 92.9%, and 90.2%, respectively; = .018). With almost 1 million Latinas in the United States with elevated FPG unaware of their diabetes risk, and less likely than other at-risk women to see health care providers, there is an urgent need to establish alternate sites of opportunity for their diabetes screening. Spanish En las mujeres latinas con niveles plasmáticos de glucosa en ayunas (NPGA) correspondientes a prediabetes y diabetes, la detección temprana es un aspecto componente fundamental para la buena salud. Datos obtenidos entre los años 2009–2010 indican que un 36.7% de las mujeres Latinas en los Estados Unidos tenían NPGA elevados. Las mujeres Latinas con NPGA elevados que no sabían que tenían diabetes fueron significativamente menos que las mujeres blancas y negras no hispanas que habían visitado a un proveedor de salud en el último año (75.8%, 92% y 90.2% respectivamente; p = .018). Alrededor de un millón de Latinas en los Estados Unidos con NPGA elevados no conocen su riesgo de diabetes y tienen menos probabilidades que otras mujeres a riesgo de diabetes de visitar a un proveedor de salud. En consecuencia, es urgente establecer lugares alternos donde se puedan realizar exámenes para detectar diabetes.
    Hispanic Health Care International 03/2014; 12(1):16-23. DOI:10.1891/1540-4153.12.1.16
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    ABSTRACT: To quantify the effect of opiate substitution treatment in relation to HIV transmission among people who inject drugs. Systematic review and meta-analysis of prospective published and unpublished observational studies. Search of Medline, Embase, PsychINFO, and the Cochrane Library from the earliest year to 2011 without language restriction. We selected studies that directly assessed the impact of opiate substitution treatment in relation to incidence of HIV and studies that assessed incidence of HIV in people who inject drugs and that might have collected data regarding exposure to opiate substitution treatment but not have reported it. Authors of these studies were contacted. Data were extracted by two reviewers and pooled in a meta-analysis with a random effects model. Twelve published studies that examined the impact of opiate substitution treatment on HIV transmission met criteria for inclusion, and unpublished data were obtained from three additional studies. All included studies examined methadone maintenance treatment. Data from nine of these studies could be pooled, including 819 incident HIV infections over 23 608 person years of follow-up. Opiate substitution treatment was associated with a 54% reduction in risk of HIV infection among people who inject drugs (rate ratio 0.46, 95% confidence interval 0.32 to 0.67; P<0.001). There was evidence of heterogeneity between studies (I(2)=60%, χ(2)=20.12, P=0.010), which could not be explained by geographical region, site of recruitment, or the provision of incentives. There was weak evidence for greater benefit associated with longer duration of exposure to opiate substitution treatment. Opiate substitution treatment provided as maintenance therapy is associated with a reduction in the risk of HIV infection among people who inject drugs. These findings, however, could reflect comparatively high levels of motivation to change behaviour and reduce injecting risk behaviour among people who inject drugs who are receiving opiate substitution treatment.
    BMJ (online) 10/2012; 345(oct03 3):e5945. DOI:10.1136/bmj.e5945 · 17.45 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: There are now an estimated 16 million people who inject drugs (PWID) throughout the world, 3 million of whom are estimated to be infected with HIV. In many countries, substantial proportions of PWID belong to racial/ethnic/nationality minority groups, and are at increased likelihood of being infected with HIV. This article reviews current evidence on ethnic disparities in HIV infection among PWID and assesses the issues that would need to be addressed to reduce these disparities. An ongoing systematic review of ethnic disparities has found that, in a pooled weighted odds ratio, ethnic minority PWID are twice as likely to be HIV seropositive than ethnic majority, PWID from the same geographic area. If implemented with sufficient quality and coverage, current HIV prevention programs probably have the capability of ending HIV transmission among both ethnic majority and minority PWID. Large-scale, evidence-based prevention programs need to be implemented in the contexts of patterns of injecting drug use that continue to evolve-with injecting practices spreading to new areas, changes in drugs injected, and some transitions from injecting to noninjecting drug use. Lack of financial resources and policies against evidence-based programming are increasingly important problems that are likely to have particularly adverse effects on ethnic minority PWID. Racial/ethnic/nationality disparities in HIV infection are quite common among PWID. Addressing these disparities will be a fundamental challenge within a human rights approach to public health.
    Current opinion in HIV and AIDS 04/2012; 7(4):354-61. DOI:10.1097/COH.0b013e328353d990 · 4.68 Impact Factor
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    Sherry Deren · Sung-Yeon Kang · Milton Mino · Randy M Seewald ·
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    ABSTRACT: The need for expansion of health services provided in drug treatment programs has been widely discussed since the beginning of the HIV epidemic among drug users. Service expansion has focused on various types of services including medical services (eg, primary care) and harm-reduction services (eg, provision of sterile syringes). A staff survey was conducted in 8 methadone maintenance clinics in the New York/New Jersey area to assess attitudes toward the provision of harm reduction and other services in methadone clinics, and the relationship of these attitudes to other variables. A total of 114 staff members in 8 methadone maintenance clinics completed the survey. The majority of staff was supportive of adding services, over 90% supported medical services, and the majority supported harm-reduction services such as syringe access and disposal services. Higher education and HIV knowledge levels were significant correlates of favorable attitudes toward service provision. Support for providing harm-reduction services in methadone maintenance clinics was found. Enhancing knowledge of staff regarding various types of health services, and engaging them in how best to institute new services, should be undertaken when new services are planned.
    Journal of Addiction Medicine 12/2011; 5(4):289-92. DOI:10.1097/ADM.0b013e31821dc61a · 1.76 Impact Factor
  • Sung-Yeon Kang · Sherry Deren · Hector M Colón ·
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    ABSTRACT: Many barriers to the use of HIV medications have been identified. Research findings have also shown a gender disparity in HIV care behaviors. However, interaction effects of gender with the potential barriers to use of HIV medications among HIV-positive minority drug users remain under-studied. This study examined interaction effects of gender with potential moderating factors (i.e., individual and network characteristics) on the use of HIV medications. Analyses were based on 260 HIV-positive Puerto Rican heroin and cocaine users, recruited in New York (N=178) and Puerto Rico (N=82) in 1998-2003. HIV status was assessed using OraSure, and heroin or cocaine use was verified by urinalysis. All participants were tested and interviewed at baseline and six-month follow-up (183 males; 77 females). In predicting use of HIV medications at follow-up (HIVMEDF), use of HIV medications at baseline (HIVMED), individual characteristics (e.g., depression), network characteristics (e.g., having an intravenous drug user [IDU] sex partner), recruitment site, and interaction effects of these variables with gender, were examined in multiple logistic regression analysis. Use of HIV medications was low (29% at baseline; 40% at follow-up). HIVMED, recruitment site, gender, and depression had significant main effects on HIVMEDF. Depression also had a significant interaction effect with gender on HIVMEDF. Unlike men, women with depression were less likely than women without depression to use the medications. The findings indicate that gender-specific issues should be addressed by treatment programs for HIV-positive drug users, with particular efforts needed to enhance use of medications for depressed women.
    AIDS Care 11/2011; 23(11):1467-71. DOI:10.1080/09540121.2011.565022 · 1.60 Impact Factor
  • Milton Mino · Sherry Deren · Sung-Yeon Kang · Honoria Guarino ·
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    ABSTRACT: Participating in civic activities has been found to be related to positive health outcomes. This study examines associations between injection drug use health variables (sharing paraphernalia, using shooting galleries) and political/civic engagement (identifying with any political party, attention paid to politics and being registered to vote). Participants (N = 162) were recruited at 6 New York City (NYC) methadone programs as part of an HIV intervention (86% male). In the bivariate analysis, being registered to vote and political party identification were related to lower paraphernalia sharing; higher levels of attention paid to politics were associated with lower shooting gallery use. In the multivariate analysis, political party identification was associated with lower paraphernalia sharing and higher levels of attention paid to politics was related to lower shooting gallery use. Findings suggest that maintaining connections with mainstream civic activities can be related to reduced health risks, including HIV risk behaviors. This study contributes to understanding the relationships between involvement in civic/political participation and health, an area in which few studies have been conducted.
    The American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse 08/2011; 37(6):520-4. DOI:10.3109/00952990.2011.600384 · 1.78 Impact Factor
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    Sherry Deren · Sung-Yeon Kang · Milton Mino · Honoria Guarino ·
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    ABSTRACT: Peer outreach models have been successful in addressing HIV risk behaviors of drug users. Patients in methadone maintenance treatment programs who were migrants from Puerto Rico and/or familiar with drug use there were trained to conduct HIV-related peer outreach. A group randomized design was implemented; patients in the Experimental (E) condition (n = 80) received training and conducted 12 weeks of outreach. Half of the patients completed the training and outreach. At follow-up, patients in the E condition who conducted outreach felt they were more helpful to their community, showed a trend for engaging in more vocational activities, and were more likely to talk with others about HIV, compared to those who did not conduct outreach and those in the Control condition (n = 78). Drug treatment patients who are migrants can be trained as peer outreach workers and short-term benefits were found. Longer term maintenance of benefits should be assessed.
    Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health 04/2011; 14(2):251-8. DOI:10.1007/s10903-011-9467-4 · 1.16 Impact Factor
  • Milton Mino · Sherry Deren · Hector M Colón ·
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    ABSTRACT: This paper presents findings from the Alliance for Research in El Barrio and Bayamón (ARIBBA) research study, which compared HIV-related risk behaviors, HIV infection rates, and mortality rates of 800 Puerto Rican injection drug users and crack smokers in East Harlem, New York, with 399 of their counterparts in Bayamón, Puerto Rico. The study was conducted from 1996 to 2004 and is among the most comprehensive ever undertaken on HIV risk behaviors of drug users in Puerto Rico. This paper presents the main findings, many of which have been published in scientific journals. The study found that drug users in Puerto Rico became infected with HIV at a rate almost 4 times higher than Puerto Rican drug users in New York, and they died at a rate that was more than 3 times as high. The findings indicate that drug users in Puerto Rico are more likely than Puerto Rican drug users in New York to engage in injection drug use and sexual behaviors that put them at risk of becoming infected with HIV. In addition, they have fewer prevention resources available to them. HIV prevention programs are scarce in Puerto Rico and the availability of drug treatment programs in Puerto Rico declined by over one third during the period examined. Additionally, significantly fewer HIV-positive drug users in Puerto Rico were taking HIV-related medications than in New York. The paper concludes with recommendations and lessons learned from the study.
    Journal of the International Association of Physicians in AIDS Care (JIAPAC) 03/2011; 10(4):248-59. DOI:10.1177/1545109710397768
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    ABSTRACT: The importance of identifying differences in HIV risk between Hispanic subgroups is the focus of this article. Data are drawn from two New York?based HIV-related studies: among Puerto Rican drug users and among new immigrants from Central America, the Dominican Republic, and Mexico. Results indicated that intercultural individuals (i.e., those involved in both Puerto Rican and mainland cultures) were less risky in terms of injection- and sex-related risk behaviors and that geographic and other contextual factors, along with cultural norms, influence risk behaviors for immigrants. Both studies indicate the need to differentiate subgroup factors affecting HIV risk and prevention behaviors to develop appropriate and effective community-based interventions. The study's limitations are noted.
    Substance Use &amp Misuse 01/2011; 46(2-3):254-63. DOI:10.3109/10826084.2011.523215 · 1.23 Impact Factor
  • Sherry Deren · Holly Hagan ·

    Substance Use &amp Misuse 01/2011; 46(2-3):129-30. DOI:10.3109/10826084.2011.521455 · 1.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: As we begin the fourth decade of the epidemic, it is clear that, as demonstrated by the articles in this Special Issue, much has been learned about factors contributing to the decline in HIV prevalence among drug users in New York. However, there are a number of outstanding research questions that remain or are emerging. Following is a summary of some of the topics requiring further research. While this summary does not represent a comprehensive list, it is based on many of the questions raised in the articles in this Special Issue and identifies some of the directions to be investigated during the next decade.
    Substance Use &amp Misuse 01/2011; 46(2-3):316-9. DOI:10.3109/10826084.2011.523324 · 1.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Men who have sex with men (MSM) and use drugs are at high risk for HIV. This study assessed drug and sex-related risk behaviours and sexual identities for MSM drug injectors and crack smokers. One hundred and forty four MSM drug injectors and crack smokers from five USA cities were interviewed. One-third of the men were current injectors, twice as many reported lifetime injection. Most (56%) reported sex with women in the prior year; sex trading was reported by 32% with males and 53% with females. There were significant differ- ences between private and public sexual identities. For example, while 31% reported being behaviourally bisexual, only 17% identified themselves to others as bisexual. Drug using MSM are clearly a heterogenous group and prevention messages addressing this diversity are needed.
    Culture Health & Sexuality 11/2010; 3(3). DOI:10.1080/13691050152484740 · 1.55 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Hispanic patients were recruited from methadone maintenance treatment programs in 2005-2008 to be trained as peer outreach workers, targeting migrant drug users from Puerto Rico. Goals of the outreach focused on reducing HIV-related risk behaviors. A total of 80 peers were recruited from 4 clinics in New York and New Jersey. Following training, they conducted outreach in their communities for 12 weeks. This paper describes the challenges encountered during the recruitment, training, and outreach phases of the project, from the field perspective. Recommendations for future efforts in training drug treatment patients as outreach workers are provided.
    Substance Use &amp Misuse 04/2010; 45(12):1892-908. DOI:10.3109/10826081003684863 · 1.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: From 2005 to 2008, the Bienvenidos Project trained Puerto Rican patients of New York City and New Jersey Methadone Maintenance Treatment Programs to conduct peer-based community outreach to migrant Puerto Rican drug users to reduce migrants' HIV risk behaviors. Ethnographic research, including focus groups, individual interviews, and observations, was conducted with a subset of the patients trained as peers (n = 49; 67% male; mean age 40.3 years) to evaluate the self-perceived effects of the intervention. Results of the ethnographic component of this study are summarized. The role of ethnographic methods in implementing and evaluating this kind of intervention is also discussed.
    Substance Use &amp Misuse 02/2010; 45(3):414-36. DOI:10.3109/10826080903452439 · 1.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background Partner Notification (PN) is an underutilized HIV prevention strategy. Baseline data collected prior to a peer educator training intervention to promote HIV PN are presented. This report summarizes client and staff attitudes towards anonymous HIV PN prior to the peer education intervention. Methods HIV+ clients from an HIV/AIDS Service organization and a methadone maintenance treatment program (N=68) were administered a brief survey on: demographics, disclosure, knowledge of an anonymous Contact Notification Assistance Program (CNAP). Staff members (N=43) were also administered a survey on attitudes towards and experience with PN. Results The client survey revealed: (1) half had self-disclosed to more than 10 people; (2) 4 clients (6%) had told no one their status; (3) 40% knew of, but only 7 (10%) used CNAP. The staff survey showed: (1) 91% believed that HIV+ persons have a responsibility to notify their partners, yet only 51% ever asked clients if they needed notification assistance; (2) 63% of staff members knew of, but only 23% had advised clients to use CNAP; (3) 6 (14%) staff members reported having ever assisted clients with notifying partner(s). Conclusion Rates of utilization of both anonymous and assisted HIV PN are low in this sample. While most HIV+ individuals reported disclosing their status to others, past sex or drug sharing partners may not have been notified. Peer educators will promote both anonymous notification and disclosure. The effects of 3 months of peer education on both clients and staff will be evaluated at the completion of the program.
    137st APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition 2009; 11/2009

Publication Stats

2k Citations
242.02 Total Impact Points


  • 2012-2015
    • City University of New York - York College
      New York, New York, United States
  • 2010-2015
    • NYU Langone Medical Center
      New York, New York, United States
  • 2011-2014
    • CUNY Graduate Center
      New York, New York, United States
  • 1993-2009
    • National Development and Research Institutes, Inc.
      New York City, New York, United States
  • 2007
    • New York Academy of Medicine
      New York City, New York, United States
  • 2006
    • NDRI-USA, Inc.
      New York City, New York, United States
  • 2004
    • Central University of the Caribbean
      Bayamon, Cidra, Puerto Rico
  • 2000
    • Burke Medical Research Institute New York
      New York, New York, United States
    • Medical College of Wisconsin
      • Center for AIDS Intervention Research
      Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States
  • 1997
    • Beth Israel Medical Center
      New York, New York, United States
  • 1995
    • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
      Атланта, Michigan, United States
  • 1977
    • New York State Office of Children and Family Services
      New York City, New York, United States