Purpose: Rural areas of the United States have experienced outbreaks of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections among people who use drugs (PWUD). Pharmacy-based interventions may play a crucial role in prevention and entry into care, especially when traditional health care access is limited. The willingness of rural PWUD to use pharmacies for HIV/HCV-related services remains unknown. The purpose of this study was to describe the factors associated with the perceived likelihood of participating in free pharmacy-based HIV and HCV testing among PWUD living in rural Kentucky. Methods: Baseline data from the CARE2HOPE study in five Appalachian counties in eastern Kentucky were used. Participants were recruited using respondent-driven sampling and completed interviewer-administered surveys. Guided by the Andersen and Newman Framework of Health Services Utilization, we examined distributions and correlates of items regarding willingness to participate in free pharmacy-based HIV/HCV testing using logistic regression. Analyses included individuals who reported being HIV (N = 304) or HCV (N = 185) negative. Findings: Seventy-five percent of PWUD reported being “very likely” to participate in free pharmacy-based HIV testing and 80% for HCV testing. Two factors were associated with being less willing to participate in free HIV testing: PWUD who previously tested for HIV (OR: 0.47, CI: 0.25–0.88) and PWUD who obtained a high school diploma or equivalent compared to those who completed less (OR: 0.50, CI: 0.26–0.99). Conclusion: Free pharmacy-based HIV and HCV testing was invariably acceptable among most of the rural PWUD in our sample, suggesting that pharmacies might be acceptable testing venues for this population.
|Number of pages
|Journal of Rural Health
|Published - Jan 1 2022
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2021 National Rural Health Association
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health