PrEP awareness, eligibility, and interest among people who inject drugs in Baltimore, Maryland

Susan G. Sherman, Kristin E. Schneider, Ju Nyeong Park, Sean T. Allen, Derrick Hunt, C. Patrick Chaulk, Brian W. Weir

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Background: Limited research has examined pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) interest among people who inject drugs (PWID). To date, few studies have examined the relationship between PrEP eligibility and PrEP interest among PWID. Methods: Data were from an anonymous, cross-sectional survey of Baltimore Syringe Services Program (SSP) clients and non-client peers, restricted to HIV-uninfected participants (N = 265). Participants were classified as PrEP eligible/ineligible based on injection related criteria outlined in the CDC's PrEP guidelines. Participants were asked if they were previously aware of PrEP, would be interested in taking PrEP, and the ease of taking PrEP daily. Participants self-reported their sociodemographic characteristics, health diagnoses, and recent drug use, overdose, and drug treatment history. We estimated bivariate and multivariate logistic regression models to test for significant predictors of interest in PrEP. Results: One-quarter of PWID had previously heard of PrEP and 63% of the sample was interested in taking PrEP. Only two respondents were currently taking PrEP. The majority (89%) thought taking PrEP every day would be easy. In the presence of other variables, PrEP interest was associated with PrEP eligibility (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 2.46; 95% Confidence Interval [CI]:1.34,4.50) and the number of medical diagnoses (aOR = 1.16; 95% CI:1.01,1.33) Conclusions: Most PWID were unaware of PrEP but interested in taking it. PWID who were eligible for PrEP are more likely to be interested in taking it. Having co-morbid conditions was an important correlate of PrEP interest. These results underscore the importance of providers across the healthcare sector engaging PWID in discussions about PrEP.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)148-155
Number of pages8
JournalDrug and alcohol dependence
StatePublished - Feb 1 2019


  • HIV prevention
  • injection drug use
  • pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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