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Patient Characteristics and Availability of Onsite Non-rapid and Rapid HIV Testing in US Substance Use Disorder Treatment Programs.

Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment 2012;44(1):120-125. [doi: 10.1016/j.jsat.2012.03.004]

Amanda J. Abraham, PhD (University of Georgia), Lauren A. O'Brien, PhD (University of Georgia), Hannah K. Knudsen, PhD (University of Kentucky), Brian E. Bride, PhD (University of Georgia), G. Rush Smith, PhD (University of Georgia), Paul M. Roman, PhD (University of Georgia).

Racial and ethnic minorities and injection drug users (IDUs) are at increased risk of HIV infection. However, the associations between these patient characteristics and the availability of onsite HIV testing in substance use disorder treatment programs are unknown. This paper explored patient caseload characteristics associated with the availability of HIV testing in a sample of substance use disorder (SUD) treatment programs affiliated with the National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network (CTN). The authors found that almost half of programs (48%) provided onsite HIV testing for SUD patients, which is nearly double the rates reported by privately funded treatment programs and programs responding to the most recent National Survey of Substance Abuse Treatment Services. About 52% of CTN-affiliated programs offering onsite HIV testing services used a rapid test. Results also showed positive associations between the percentages of African American, Hispanic, and injection drug-using patients and the odds of offering non-rapid onsite HIV testing versus no onsite testing at all.

Conclusions: This finding is promising and suggests that rapid HIV testing may be a feasible innovation that can be successfully adopted by SUD treatment programs. The study also suggests that many programs are responding well to the needs of at-risk populations. Treatment programs and their patients may benefit from greater adoption of rapid testing which is less costly and better ensures that patients receive their results. (Article (Peer-Reviewed), PDF, English, 2012)

Keywords: African Americans | Community health services | CTN platform/ancillary study | Health services research | Hispanics and Latinos | HIV/AIDS | HIV rapid testing | Injection drug use | Minority groups | National Treatment Center Study (NTCS) | Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment (journal)

Document No: 817, PMID: 22538173, PMCID: PMC3408854 (available 11/1/2013).

Submitted by CTN Dissemination Librarians, 5/1/2012.


Abraham, Amanda J. mail
Bride, Brian E.
Knudsen, Hannah K. mail
O'Brien, Lauren A.
Roman, Paul M. mail
Smith, G. Rush search

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Supported by a grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse to the University of Washington Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute.
The materials on this site have neither been created nor reviewed by NIDA.
Updated 11/2012 --
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