New York State Psychiatric Institute, USA.
Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University Medical Center, USA.
Division of Infectious Diseases, Columbia University Medical Center, USA.
Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, USA.
Given the efficacy of new medications for Hepatitis C virus (HCV), we aimed to determine whether drinking relates to HCV treatment access among the high-risk group of individuals with HIV/HCV co-infection.
We sampled 210 patients in a sexual health clinic; of these, 39 reported HIV/HCV co-infection (79.49% male; 56.41% Black). Patients completed a self-report survey on drinking and treatment history.
Those drinking despite health problems reported less HCV treatment (p =0.035). Drinking despite health problems did not relate to whether HCV treatment was recommended by providers, and binge drinking did not relate to either HCV outcome. Drinking was unrelated to HIV treatment.
HIV/HCV co-infected individuals drinking despite health problems are in urgent need of attention, to reduce drinking and increase engagement in treatment. Drinking despite health problems m ay serve as an effective screening question to identify HIV/HCV co-infected drinkers who are most at risk of being untreated.