, Volume 10, Issue 1, pp 71-81
Date: 02 Dec 2005

Prevalence and Correlates of HIV Risk Behaviors among Drug Users in China

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This study examined the prevalence and correlates of HIV risk behaviors among 1,153 current drug users in China. Chi-squared tests of differences were used to test if drug users differed from non-users; logistic regression was used to identify behavior-specific risk factors. Results indicate that 60% of drug users injected drugs and more than one third shared needles. Compared to non-users, drug users had higher rates of risky sexual behavior and HIV/STDs. Among drug users, ethnic minorities and migrants were most vulnerable to unprotected casual sex and needle sharing. Drug users who experienced social isolation were associated with lower odds of risk behaviors; those who had experiences of anti-social behaviors and commercial sex, poor HIV knowledge, and perceived greater vulnerability were more prone to unprotected casual sex and needle sharing. Additional correlates of unprotected casual sex included being single, depression, and taking drugs/alcohol during sex. Additional risk factors of needle sharing included education and initiated drug use at younger ages. It is imperative that HIV interventions in China target drug users and address behavior-specific risk factors.