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HIV Pre-exposure Prophylaxis and Buprenorphine at a Drug Detoxification Center During the Opioid Epidemic: Opportunities and Challenges


Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and buprenorphine decrease HIV acquisition. Between November, 2016 and July, 2017, we surveyed persons (N = 200) at a drug detoxification center to assess their interest in PrEP and in buprenorphine, and to examine factors associated with such interests. Over the previous 6 months, 58% (117/200) injected drugs, 87% (173/200) used opioids, 50% (85/171) had condomless sex. Only 22% (26/117) of persons who injected drugs were aware of PrEP, yet 74% (86/116) and 72% (84/116) were interested in oral or injectable PrEP, respectively. Thirty-eight percent (47/125) of persons not receiving buprenorphine or methadone expressed interest in buprenorphine. After multivariable adjustment, Latinx ethnicity was associated with interest in PrEP (aOR 3.80; 95% CI 1.37–10.53), while male gender (aOR 2.76; 95% CI 1.21–6.34) was associated with interest in buprenorphine. Opportunities exist to implement PrEP and buprenorphine within drug detoxification centers.

Clinical trial registration NCT02869776.

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The authors would like to thank study participants and our research team for their contributions to this work.


This work was supported by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases [P30AI042853 Providence/Boston Center for AIDS Research collaborative developmental grant to S.A.A]; and the National Institute of Drug Abuse [R25DA035163 pilot award to S.A.A, K23DA044085 to S.A.A, R01DA046527 to B.P.L, and P30DA040500 to B.P.L]. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of National Institutes of Health.

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Correspondence to Sabrina A. Assoumou.

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Findings were presented as a poster at the College on Problems of Drug Dependence (CPDD), San Diego, California, June 11th, 2018.

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Assoumou, S.A., Paniagua, S.M., Gonzalez, P. et al. HIV Pre-exposure Prophylaxis and Buprenorphine at a Drug Detoxification Center During the Opioid Epidemic: Opportunities and Challenges. AIDS Behav 25, 2591–2598 (2021).

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  • Pre-exposure prophylaxis
  • Persons who inject drugs
  • Human immunodeficiency virus
  • Medication for opioid use disorder
  • Drug detoxification center