Objectives. This study sought to assess relations of laws prohibiting over-the-counter syringe sales (anti-OTC laws) to population prevalence of injection drug users and HIV prevalence or incidence among 96 US metropolitan areas. Methods. A cross-sectional analysis was used. Results. Metropolitan areas with anti-OTC laws had a higher mean HIV prevalence (13.8% vs 6.7%) than other metropolitan areas (pseudo-P>.001). In 83 metropolitan areas with HIV prevalence of less than 20%, anti-OTC laws were associated with HIV incidence rates of 1% or greater (pseudo-P>.001 ). Population proportions of injection drug users did not vary by presence of anti-OTC laws. Conclusions. Anti-OTC laws are not associated with lower population proportions of injection drug users. Laws restricting syringe access are associated with HIV transmission and should be re pealed.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||3|
|Journal||American journal of public health|
|State||Published - 2001|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health