25 research outputs found

    The longitudinal association between homelessness, injection drug use, and injection-related risk behavior among persons with a history of injection drug use in Baltimore, MD

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    AbstractBackgroundFew studies have assessed the temporal association between homelessness and injection drug use, and injection-related risk behavior.MethodsAmong a cohort of 1405 current and former injection drug users in follow-up from 2005 to 2009, we used random intercept models to assess the temporal association between homelessness and subsequent injection drug use, and to determine whether the association between homelessness and sustained injection drug use among active injectors differed from the association between homelessness and relapse among those who stopped injecting. We also assessed the association between homelessness and subsequent injection-related risk behavior among participants who injected drugs consecutively across two visits. Homelessness was categorized by duration: none, <1 month, and ‚Č•1 month.ResultsHomelessness was reported on at least one occasion by 532 (38%) participants. The relationship between homelessness and subsequent injection drug use was different for active injectors and those who stopped injecting. Among those who stopped injecting, homelessness was associated with relapse [<1 month: AOR=1.67, 95% CI (1.01, 2.74); ‚Č•1 month: AOR=1.34 95% CI (0.77, 2.33)]. Among active injectors, homelessness was not associated with sustained injection drug use [<1 month: AOR=1.03, 95% CI (0.71, 1.49); ‚Č•1 month: AOR=0.81 95% CI (0.56, 1.17)]. Among those injecting drugs across two consecutive visits, homelessness ‚Č•1 month was associated with subsequent injection-related risk behavior [AOR=1.61, 95% CI (1.06, 2.45)].ConclusionHomelessness appears to be associated with relapse and injection-related risk behavior. Strengthening policies and interventions that prevent homelessness may reduce injection drug use and injection-related risk behaviors

    Public Housing Relocations and Relationships of Changes in Neighborhood Disadvantage and Transportation Access to Unmet Need for Medical Care

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    Cross-sectional research suggests that neighborhood characteristics and transportation access shape unmet need for medical care. This longitudinal analysis explores relationships of changes in neighborhood socioeconomic disadvantage and transportation access to unmet need for medical care

    Building health equity through housing policies: critical reflections and future directions for research

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    Housing may be at once the most powerful and underused tool at our disposal to improve population health. Using examples from the USA, we argue that current levels of housing insecurity are the result of clear and inequitable policy choices, leading to the entrenchment of health inequities-particularly, across race and class. Solutions to housing insecurity must, therefore, be structural. The COVID-19 pandemic has opened a window of opportunity for these structural housing policy reforms. Through justice- and action-oriented research, health researchers can inform the development and implementation of housing policies that advance health equity. We offer a series of recommendations to better position our field to achieve this goal

    Public Support for Policies to Increase Housing Stability During the COVID-19 Pandemic

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    IntroductionThe COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated longstanding housing precarity. This study measures the public support for policies designed to increase housing stability and gauges whether support levels are associated with views about the role of evictions in COVID-19 transmission and the existence of racial inequities in the housing market.MethodsA cross-sectional survey with a representative sample of U.S. adults in November 2020 assessed support for 4 housing policies. Logistic regression models estimated the adjusted levels of support for each policy, with separate models testing the association with whether or not a respondent recognized the role of evictions in increased COVID-19 transmission or acknowledged racial inequities in the housing market.ResultsMost U.S. adults supported policies aimed to increase housing stability during the COVID-19 pandemic, including extending moratoriums on evictions (63%) and foreclosures (67%) and increasing emergency rental assistance (63%). In total, 54% supported increased government spending on housing vouchers. Adults who agreed that averting eviction would slow COVID-19 transmission had higher support for housing stability policies, as did those who agreed that it was easier for White families to find affordable, high-quality housing than Black families.ConclusionsSupport for housing stability policies was strong among U.S. adults, particularly among those who agreed that preventing evictions slowed COVID-19 transmission and among those who acknowledged racial inequities in the housing market. Raising public awareness of the connections among unstable housing, infectious disease transmission, and racial inequity could broaden the support for policies to keep people in their homes through the pandemic

    Expiring Eviction Moratoriums and COVID-19 Incidence and Mortality

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    The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and associated economic crisis have placed millions of US households at risk of eviction. Evictions may accelerate COVID-19 transmission by decreasing individuals' ability to socially distance. We leveraged variation in the expiration of eviction moratoriums in US states to test for associations between evictions and COVID-19 incidence and mortality. The study included 44 US states that instituted eviction moratoriums, followed from March 13 to September 3, 2020. We modeled associations using a difference-in-difference approach with an event-study specification. Negative binomial regression models of cases and deaths included fixed effects for state and week and controlled for time-varying indicators of testing, stay-at-home orders, school closures, and mask mandates. COVID-19 incidence and mortality increased steadily in states after eviction moratoriums expired, and expiration was associated with a doubling of COVID-19 incidence (incidence rate ratio = 2.1; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.1, 3.9) and a 5-fold increase in COVID-19 mortality (mortality rate ratio = 5.4; CI: 3.1, 9.3) 16 weeks after moratoriums lapsed. These results imply an estimated 433,700 excess cases (CI: 365,200, 502,200) and 10,700 excess deaths (CI: 8,900, 12,500) nationally by September 3, 2020. The expiration of eviction moratoriums was associated with increased COVID-19 incidence and mortality, supporting the public-health rationale for eviction prevention to limit COVID-19 cases and deaths

    Associations of place characteristics with HIV and HCV risk behaviors among racial/ethnic groups of people who inject drugs in the United States

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    Investigate whether characteristics of geographic areas are associated with condomless sex and injection-related risk behavior among racial/ethnic groups of people who inject drugs (PWID) in the United States. PWID were recruited from 19 metropolitan statistical areas for 2009 National HIV Behavioral Surveillance. Administrative data described ZIP codes, counties, and metropolitan statistical areas where PWID lived. Multilevel models, stratified by racial/ethnic groups, were used to assess relationships of place-based characteristics to condomless sex and injection-related risk behavior (sharing injection equipment). Among black PWID, living in the South (vs. Northeast) was associated with injection-related risk behavior (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] = 2.24, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.21-4.17; P = .011), and living in counties with higher percentages of unaffordable rental housing was associated with condomless sex (AOR = 1.02, 95% CI = 1.00-1.04; P = .046). Among white PWID, living in ZIP codes with greater access to drug treatment was negatively associated with condomless sex (AOR = 0.93, 95% CI = 0.88-1.00; P = .038). Policies that increase access to affordable housing and drug treatment may make environments more conducive to safe sexual behaviors among black and white PWID. Future research designed to longitudinally explore the association between residence in the south and injection-related risk behavior might identify specific place-based features that sustain patterns of injection-related risk behavior

    Risk Environments, Race/Ethnicity, and HIV Status in a Large Sample of People Who Inject Drugs in the United States.

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    INTRODUCTION:We analyzed relationships between place characteristics and being HIV-negative among black, Latino, and white people who inject drugs (PWID) in the US. METHODS:Data on PWID (N = 9077) were from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's 2009 National HIV Behavioral Surveillance. Administrative data were analyzed to describe the 968 ZIP codes, 51 counties, and 19 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) where they lived. Multilevel multivariable models examined relationships between place characteristics and HIV status. Exploratory population attributable risk percents (e-PAR%s) were estimated. RESULTS:Black and Latino PWID were more likely to be HIV-negative if they lived in less economically disadvantaged counties, or in MSAs with less criminal-justice activity (i.e., lower drug-related arrest rates, lower policing/corrections expenditures). Latino PWID were more likely to be HIV-negative in MSAs with more Latino isolation, less black isolation, and less violent crime. E-PAR%s attributed 8-19% of HIV cases among black PWID and 1-15% of cases among Latino PWID to place characteristics. DISCUSSION:Evaluations of structural interventions to improve economic conditions and reduce drug-related criminal justice activity may show evidence that they protect black and Latino PWID from HIV infection
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