UBC Community, Partners, and Alumni Publications

Syringe Sharing and HIV Incidence Among Injection Drug Users and Increased Access to Sterile Syringes Kerr, Thomas; Small, Will; Buchner, Chris; Zhang, Ruth; Li, Kathy; Montaner, Julio; Wood, Evan


Objectives—We assessed the effects of syringe exchange program (SEP) policy on rates of HIV risk behavior and HIV incidence among injection drug users. Methods—Using a multivariate generalized estimating equation and Cox regression methods, we examined syringe borrowing, syringe lending, and HIV incidence among a prospective cohort of 1228 injection drug users in Vancouver, British Columbia. Results—We observed substantial declines in rates of syringe borrowing (from 20.1% in 1998 to 9.2% in 2003) and syringe lending (from 19.1% in 1998 to 6.8% in 2003) following SEP policy change. These declines coincided with a statistically significant increase in the proportion of participants accessing sterile syringes from nontraditional SEP sources (P

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