Homelessness and other risk factors for HIV infection in the current outbreak among injection drug users in Athens, Greece

Vana Sypsa, Dimitrios Paraskevis, Meni Malliori, Georgios K. Nikolopoulos, Anastasios Panopoulos, Maria Kantzanou, Antigoni Katsoulidou, Mina Psichogiou, Anastasios Fotiou, Anastasia Pharris, Marita Van De Laar, Lucas Wiessing, Don Des Jarlais, Samuel R. Friedman, Angelos Hatzakis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objectives: We examined HIV prevalence and risk factors among injection drug users (IDUs) in Athens, Greece, during an HIV outbreak. Methods: We used respondent-driven sampling (RDS) to recruit 1404 IDUs to the Aristotle intervention in August to October 2012. We interviewed participants and tested for HIV. We performed bivariate and multivariate analyses. Results: Estimated HIV prevalence was 19.8% (RDS-weighted prevalence = 14.8%). Odds of infection were 2.3 times as high in homeless as in housed IDUs and 2.1 times as high among IDUs who injected at least once per day as among less frequent injectors (both, P <.001). Six percent of men and 23.5% of women reported transactional sex in the past 12 months, and condom use was low. Intercourse with non-IDUs was common (53.2% of men, 25.6% of women). Among IDUs who had been injecting for 2 years or less the estimated incidence rate was 23.4 new HIV cases per 100 person-years at risk. Conclusions: Efforts to reduce HIV transmission should address homelessness as well as scaling up prevention services, such as needle and syringe distribution and other risk reduction interventions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)196-204
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Volume105
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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    Sypsa, V., Paraskevis, D., Malliori, M., Nikolopoulos, G. K., Panopoulos, A., Kantzanou, M., Katsoulidou, A., Psichogiou, M., Fotiou, A., Pharris, A., Van De Laar, M., Wiessing, L., Des Jarlais, D., Friedman, S. R., & Hatzakis, A. (2015). Homelessness and other risk factors for HIV infection in the current outbreak among injection drug users in Athens, Greece. American journal of public health, 105(1), 196-204. https://doi.org/10.2105/AJPH.2013.301656