Barriers to Treatment-based HIV Prevention for IDU Couples
Funded by: National Institute on Drug Abuse
Project dates: August 2007 - April 2010
Principal Investigator: Simmons, Janie

This qualitative study of couples who inject drugs and treatment providers focused on two sets of barriers to drug treatment and HIV risk reduction among African American and Latino heterosexual couples who inject drugs in New York City: (1) relationship dynamics among partnered injectors that deter treatment entry, retention or the maintenance of outcomes; and (2) couples-specific structural barriers in the treatment system that further inhibit treatment entry, retention, and the maintenance of outcomes. Existing literature on this population indicates that partnered injectors are at high risk for HIV from both drug-related and sexual risk behaviors. In addition, they have limited success in reducing drug use, accessing or completing drug abuse treatment and maintaining treatment outcomes (reduced drug use, safer drug use practices, safer sex). This study contributed to an understanding of interpersonal and structural barriers to drug treatment and treatment-mediated HIV prevention and led to recommendations for needed improvements.

Abstract on NIH RePORTER
Related Publications
Simmons J, McMahon JM (2012).
Barriers to drug treatment for IDU couples: The need for couple-based approaches
Journal of Addictive Diseases, 31 (3), 242-257. doi: 10.1080/10550887.2012.702985. PMCID: PMC4204204.

Simmons J, Rajan S, McMahon JM (2012).
Retrospective accounts of injection initiation in intimate partnerships
International Journal of Drug Policy, 23 (4), 303-311. doi: 10.1016/j.drugpo.2012.01.009. PMCID: PMC3705642.

Couples Who Inject Drugs: Barriers to Treatment
September 2013