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APHA Scientific Session and Event Listing

Racial / ethnic differences in HIV/AIDS risk perception among illicit drug users

Grace L. Reynolds, DPA1, Dennis Fisher, PhD1, Amanda Latimore, BA1, Alexander Edwards, BA1, Lucy Napper, PhD1, and Adi Jaffe, MA2. (1) Center for Behavioral Research and Services, California State University Long Beach, 1090 Atlantic Avenue, Long Beach, CA 90813, 562-495-2330, greynol2@csulb.edu, (2) Psychology, University of California, Los Angeles, 925 Weyburn Pl., #418, Los Angeles, CA 90024

Background: Alcohol and illicit drug use may have an effect on HIV/AIDS risk perception. Method: Out-of-treatment drug users (N = 1760) in Long Beach, California, completed the Risk Behavior Assessment (RBA) and the Alcohol Dependence Scale (ADS). Risk perception was measured as five categories of risk to acquire HIV/AIDS: 0%, 25%, 50%, 75%, or 100%. Findings: Interviews with 732 (42%) African Americans, 675 (38%) White and 353 (20%) Latinos were used in the analysis. The regression model predicting risk perception in African Americans included four variables and accounted for 15% of the variance: alcohol dependence score as measured by the ADS, trading sex for drugs, the number of days used crack in the last month, and the number of days used other opiates in the last month. The model for Latinos included the number of times injected with needles/syringes known to have been used by someone else in the last month and trading sex for drugs. This model accounted for 24% of the variance in risk perception among Latinos. For Whites, ever having been in methadone maintenance, the number of times injected speedball in the last month, and trading sex for drugs were all predictors of risk perception Conclusions: Risk perception for HIV/AIDS in African American drug users is predicted by alcohol dependence and crack use. Risk perception in White and Latino drug users is influenced by injection risk behaviors. Trading sex for drugs was predictive of HIV/AIDS risk perception in all racial/ethnic groups.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Drug Use, HIV/AIDS

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Not Answered

Special Populations and Substance Abuse Poster Session

The 134th Annual Meeting & Exposition (November 4-8, 2006) of APHA