Advertisement
The Body: The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource
Follow Us Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Download Our App
Professionals >> Visit The Body PROThe Body en Espanol
  
  • Email Email
  • Comments Comments
  • Printable Single-Page Print-Friendly
  • Glossary Glossary

Medical News

Impact of Prison Status on HIV-Related Risk Behaviors

May 18, 2011

US incarceration rates have increased 239 percent during the past two decades; currently, 2 million people are held in US jails or prisons. The authors noted that while earlier research has found an association between previously imprisoned homeless individuals and increased health risks, limited data are available "on the relationship between incarceration, substance abuse, and resource access among homeless persons with and without histories of incarceration."

Advertisement

The team sought to examine differences in drug and alcohol use and sexual risk behavior, mental and physical health, and access to public assistance in three mutually exclusive groups: homeless persons recently discharged from prison (less than one year ago); homeless persons discharged from prison at least one year ago; and never-incarcerated homeless persons. Data for this project came from a larger prospective study evaluating the effectiveness of three different interventions on completion of hepatitis A and B vaccination series among sheltered homeless adults in the Skid Row section of Los Angeles.

Among the 664 homeless individuals, 38 percent reported prison time, and 16 percent were recently discharged from prison. Almost half of those discharged at least one year ago reported daily use of drugs and alcohol in the preceding six months, compared to one in five persons recently released.

"Individuals with a dual history of incarceration and homelessness are at greater risk of engaging in behaviors, e.g. substance abuse, that increase their chance for HIV infection," the authors wrote. "These individuals also have sporadic and inconsistent access to substance abuse treatment and public assistance. Both drug and alcohol treatment and increased stability via financial support can reduce risk for HIV infection and, thereby, improve health outcomes in this population, one of society's most vulnerable and marginalized.

"Therefore, research and policy should direct attention to further integration of resources during and after incarceration," the authors concluded. "Social services, public assistance, and substance abuse treatment should be available to these individuals over longer term and accessible regardless of parole or probation status."

Back to other news for May 2011

Adapted from:
AIDS and Behavior
02.2011; Vol. 15: P. 340-346; Angela L. Hudson, Adeline Nyamathi, Debika Bhattacharya, Elizabeth Marlow, Steven Shoptaw, Mary Marfisee, Barbara Leake


  
  • Email Email
  • Comments Comments
  • Printable Single-Page Print-Friendly
  • Glossary Glossary

This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
 
See Also
More on the Incarcerated and HIV

No comments have been made.
 

Add Your Comment:
(Please note: Your name and comment will be public, and may even show up in
Internet search results. Be careful when providing personal information! Before
adding your comment, please read TheBody.com's Comment Policy.)

Your Name:


Your Location:

(ex: San Francisco, CA)

Your Comment:

Characters remaining:

Tools
 

Advertisement