Correlates of sharing of needles and syringes among people who inject drugs in Dhaka city, Bangladesh
Introduction: This paper examines the correlates of needle and syringe sharing among People Who Inject Drugs in Dhaka city, Bangladesh, which is currently experiencing a steep increase in HIV prevalence despite the ongoing presence of Needle Exchange Programs.
Methodology: This was a retrospective chart review with cross-sectional design that extracted data from 783 male People Who Inject Drugs enrolled into five Opioid Substitution Treatment clinics in Dhaka city between April 2010 and January 2016. Data were retrieved from the program’s electronic database. Needle and syringe sharing constituted the borrowing or lending of needles and syringes from others within the past month preceding data collection.
Results: Buprenorphine was the preferred injection drug and 44.6% shared needles and syringes within the past month. Multivariate analysis indicated that People Who Inject Drugs who were homeless (OR = 8.1, 95% CI = 1.4-44.9, p < 0.05), living with friends (OR = 6.8, 95% CI = 2.5-18.2, p < 0.001), injecting 2-3 times/day (OR = 4.8, 95% CI = 1.2-19.7, p < 0.05), injecting more than three times/day (OR = 4.8, 95% CI = 1.1-20.0, p < 0.05), not using condom with non-commercial female sex partners (OR = 3.3, 95% CI = 1.8-6.0, p < 0.05), bought sex from female sex workers (OR = 2.9, 95% CI = 1.0-8.3, p < 0.05), and did non-suicidal self-injury (OR = 1.8, 95% CI = 1.0-3.0, p < 0.05) were more likely to share needles and syringes.
Conclusions: This study demonstrates that operating a standalone harm reduction approach that just provides sterile needles and syringes may not adequately curb needle and syringe sharing among People Who Inject Drugs.
Copyright (c) 2021 Muhammad Manwar Morshed Hemel, Md. Masud Reza, Tanveer Khan Ibne Shafiq, Md. Iqbal Kabir, AKM Masud Rana, Sharful Islam Khan
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