Janie Simmons
Janie Simmons, EdD
NYU School of Global Public Health - Associate Research Scientist
NYU School of Global Public Health - Co-Investigator/Ethnographer, Couples PrEP Study
EdD, Ethnography and Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education
EdM, Ethnography and Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education
BS, Linguistics, Northeastern University
Research Interests
HIV prevention (among PWID, PWUD, serodiscordant couples, women, heterosexuals; PrEP, combination prevention), Opioid overdose prevention, Alternatives to policing as usual, Barriers to drug treatment
Janie Simmons is an Associate Research Scientist at NYU’s School of Global Public Health in the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences. She is an ethnographer who specializes in HIV and overdose prevention. She has worked extensively with people who use drugs and been involved in research in the following topic areas: drug-using couples; drug use initiation; barriers to drug treatment; online overdose prevention; trauma and secondary trauma; intimate partner violence and field-based research ethics. Dr. Simmons is co-editor and co-author (with Drs. Paul Farmer and Margaret Connors) of Women, Poverty and AIDS: Sex, Drugs and Structural Violence (1996; 2011). She has worked on a variety of NIDA-funded prevention studies in the Northeast including the Magnetic Couples Study and the WISE Study (Jim McMahon, PI) and the HEALing Initiative in Kentucky (Sharon Walsh, PI).  Since 2008, Dr. Simmons has been the PI on a NIDA-funded HIV prevention study on the interpersonal and structural dynamics which shape HIV risk and drug treatment among injecting, drug using couples and most recently, a CDC-funded pragmatic clinical trial evaluating an innovative risk reduction intervention that aims to bring policing in line with public health priorities by equipping police officers with best practices for minimizing workplace harms related to encounters with PWUO/PWID. She has also developed two computer-based, overdose-prevention training modules: one for potential bystanders and one for police officers, firefighters and EMTs. Dissemination of these online training modules is well underway on
Principal Investigator, RockawayGetsNaloxone. Active
Principal Investigator, Barriers to Treatment-based HIV Prevention for IDU Couples. Completed
Principal Investigator, Evaluation of an Experimental Educational Module on Opioid-Related Occupational Safety to Minimize Barriers to Overdose Response Among Police Officers. Completed
Principal Investigator, Dissemination and Implementation Pilot. Completed
Principal Investigator, Online Overdose Prevention, Recognition and Response. Completed
Principal Investigator, Police/Fire/EMTs Get the SKOOP: Online Skills and Training for Overdose Prevention. Completed


McMahon JM, Simmons J, Braksmajer A, LeBlanc N (2022).
HIV-serodifferent couples’ perspectives and practices regarding HIV prevention strategies: A mixed methods study
PLOS Global Public Health, 2 (8), e0000620. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgph.0000620.

Simmons J, Elliott L, Bennett AS, Beletsky L, Rajan S, Anders B, Dastparvardeh N (2022).
Evaluation of an experimental web-based educational module on opioid-related occupational safety among police officers: Protocol for a randomized pragmatic trial to minimize barriers to overdose response
JMIR Research Protocols, 11 (2), e33451. doi: 10.2196/33451. PMCID: PMC8917434.

McMahon JM, Simmons J, Haberer JE, Mannheimer S, Leblanc NM, Torres L, Quiles R, Aedo G, Javier A, Braksmajer A, Harriman G, Trabold N, Pouget ER, Kurth A, Smith MDR, Brasch J, Podsiadly EJ, Anderson PL (2021).
The Magnetic Couples Study: Protocol for a mixed methods prospective cohort study of HIV-serodifferent heterosexual couples’ perspectives and use of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP)
BMJ Open, 11 (7), e048993. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2021-048993. PMCID: PMC8252879.

McMahon JM, Braksmajer A, Zhang C, Leblanc N, Chen M, Aidala A, Simmons J (2019).
Syndemic factors associated with adherence to antiretroviral therapy among HIV-positive adult heterosexual men
AIDS Research and Therapy, 16 (1), 32. doi: 10.1186/s12981-019-0248-9. PMCID: PMC6842154.

Zhang C, McMahon J, Simmons J, Brown LL, Nash R, Liu Y (2019).
Suboptimal HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis awareness and willingness to use among women who use drugs in the United States: A systematic review and meta-analysis
AIDS and Behavior, 23 (10), 2641-2653. doi: 10.1007/s10461-019-02573-x. PMCID: PMC6790171.

Dr. Simmons' ResearchGate Profile
Selected Press
Janie Simmons interviewed on FOX5NY discussing "Rockaway Gets Naloxone", which will provide education and training on how to use naloxone and disseminate it to the Rockaway and Broad Channel communities in New York City.