Perceived Healthcare Access among Persons with and without HIV Who Use Illicit Stimulants: The Role of Cumulative Risk.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Background: Persons who use stimulant drugs have greater morbidity and mortality relative to non-users. HIV infection has the potential to contribute to even great disparity in health outcomes among persons who use stimulants. These health disparities likely result in part due to poorer access to healthcare. Our study used a cumulative risk model to examine the impact of multiple risk factors on healthcare access in a sample of persons with and without HIV who use stimulants. Method: Our sample included 453 persons who reported recent use of illicit stimulants (102 HIV+, 351 HIV-). Participants completed clinical interviews, questionnaires, and a rapid oral HIV test. We constructed an 8-item cumulative risk index that included factors related to socioeconomic status, homelessness, legal history, and substance use. Results: Participants with HIV (PHW) were older than participants without HIV and more likely to have health insurance. Participants with and without HIV reported similar prior treatment utilization, but PWH reported better healthcare access and lower cumulative risk scores. Regression analyses showed cumulative risk was a significant predictor of healthcare access (β = -0.20, p < 0.001) even after controlling for age, HIV status, and health insurance status. We did not observe an interaction of HIV status by cumulative risk. Conclusions: Access to care among persons who use stimulants, both with and without HIV, is negatively impacted by the accumulation of risk factors from a number of different domains. Understanding the cumulative effects of these factors is critical for developing interventions to facilitate access to care, thus reducing health disparities and improving health outcomes.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Causey, ST; Towe, SL; Hartsock, J; Xu, Y; Meade, CS

Published Date

  • 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 56 / 9

Start / End Page

  • 1387 - 1396

PubMed ID

  • 34034631

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC8370044

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1532-2491

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1080/10826084.2021.1928211


  • eng

Conference Location

  • England