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1.  Does Integrating Viral Hepatitis Services into a Public STD Clinic Attract Injection Drug Users for Care? 
Public Health Reports  2007;122(Suppl 2):31-35.
Injection drug users (IDUs) are at high risk for multiple health problems, including human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), viral hepatitis, and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), and are likely to have poor access to health care. To more effectively serve high-risk clients, experts recommend that programs accessed by such client populations offer integrated services. In 2000, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene integrated viral hepatitis services (vaccine and screening) into a publicly funded STD clinic. We evaluated integrated service delivery to high-risk IDUs at this clinic.
Hepatitis data were reviewed to identify clients who self-reported as IDUs. STD medical records of these clients were abstracted to ascertain primary reason for clinic visit, STD/HIV services received, and diagnoses made.
Between May 2000 and March 2004, 8,778 individuals received hepatitis services, of whom 3% (279/8,778) reported injection drug use. Nearly 60% (161/279) of IDUs reported availability of hepatitis services as the primary reason for the clinic visit. Of these 161 clients, 103 (64%) also received other services; 54% (55/103) had an STD exam (yielding 12 new STD diagnoses), and 59% (61/103) had HIV counseling and testing (yielding two new HIV cases). Of these 103 clients, 31 (30%) were referred to the clinic for hepatitis services from a drug treatment center, and 77% (24/31) tested positive for the antibody to hepatitis C virus.
Integrated hepatitis services appeared to attract IDUs to this STD clinic, where many also benefited from STD/HIV exams, testing, treatment, and referrals they may not have received otherwise.
PMCID: PMC1831812  PMID: 17542450
2.  Low Prevalence of Hepatitis C Virus Antibody in Men Who Have Sex with Men Who Do Not Inject Drugs 
Public Health Reports  2007;122(Suppl 2):63-67.
It is well documented that injection drug users (IDUs) have a high prevalence of antibodies to hepatitis C virus (HCV). Sexual transmission of HCV can occur, but studies have shown that men who have sex with men (MSM) without a history of injection drug use are not at increased risk for infection. Still, some health-care providers believe that all MSM should be routinely tested for HCV infection. To better understand the potential role of MSM in risk for HCV infection, we compared the prevalence of antibody to HCV (anti-HCV) in non-IDU MSM with that among other non-IDU n at sexually transmitted disease (STD) clinics and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) counseling and testing sites in three cities.
During 1999–2003, public health STD clinics or HIV testing programs in Seattle, San Diego, and New York City offered counseling and testing for anti-HCV for varying periods to all clients. Sera were tested using enzyme immunoassays, and final results reported using either the signal-to-cutoff ratio or recombinant immunoblot assay results. Age, sex, and risk information were collected. Prevalence ratios and 95% confidence intervals were calculated.
Anti-HCV prevalence among IDUs (men and women) was between 47% and 57% at each site, with an overall prevalence of 51% (451/887). Of 1,699 non-IDU MSM, 26 (1.5%) tested anti-HCV positive, compared with 126 (3.6%) of 3,455 other non-IDU men (prevalence ratio 0.42, 95% confidence interval 0.28, 0.64).
The low prevalence of anti-HCV among non-IDU MSM in urban public health clinics does not support routine HCV testing of all MSM.
PMCID: PMC1831798  PMID: 17542456

Results 1-2 (2)