The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) is pleased to provide this manual on a scientifically tested model of community-based outreach to reduce the risk of HIV and other blood-borne infections in drug users.

Since 1985, NIDA has conducted research to determine the most effective ways to reduce the risk of HIV/AIDS transmission in drug users and their sexual partners. Findings from more than 30 studies report that community-based outreach is an effective strategy for reaching drug-using populations and providing them with the means for behavior change. Of those drug users who participated in community-based outreach interventions, a significant number entered treatment for their drug addiction—a primary goal of any HIV prevention effort with drug users. Many others participating in these outreach interventions stopped or at least reduced their frequency of drug injection and their reuse of injection equipment.

The NIDA Community-Based Outreach Model described in this manual is based on more than 15 years of NIDA-funded research. The Model has been implemented and tested in 52 communities with more than 60,000 injection drug users and with many of their sex partners. The Model has also been adapted and tested with nearly 14,000 crack users and tailored to the needs of specific at-risk subgroups, including women who inject drugs, men who use drugs and have sex with men, and drug and sexual risk networks. Overall, the Model has been found to be effective with multiracial, multiethnic, male and female, HIV seropositive and seronegative, infected and non-infected drug-using populations residing in areas with low, medium, and high HIV prevalence.

This manual contains information that will help community planners, policymakers, programmers, and service providers develop and implement programs to better prevent the spread of HIV and other blood-borne infections. Specifically, the manual provides:

  • Research-based principles of HIV prevention for drug-using populations not in drug treatment;
  • Background information on community-based HIV prevention, including how it works, why it works, where it works, and for whom it works;
  • A discussion of the roles and personal characteristics of effective community-based outreach workers;
  • Step-by-step instructions for conducting community-based outreach and riskreduction counseling sessions for out-of-treatment drug users and their sex partners;
  • Information for program managers on how to establish a community-based outreach HIV/AIDS risk-reduction prevention program locally, establish a field station, and provide training and supervision to staff.
  • Cue cards to be used or adapted during educational and risk-reduction counseling sessions.

I hope you find this research-based manual helpful in your HIV prevention efforts with drug-using populations.

Alan I. Leshner, Ph.D. Director

Download The NIDA Community-Based Outreach Model:  A Manual To Reduce the Risk of HIV and Other Blood-Borne Infections in Drug Users (PDF, 224KB)

NIH Pub Number: 
00-4812
Author: 
National Institute on Drug Abuse
Date: 
September 2000

Since 1985, the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has conducted research to determine the most effective ways to reduce the risk of HIV/AIDS transmission by drug users and their sexual partners. Findings from more than 30 studies reported that community-based outreach is an effective strategy for reaching drug-using populations and providing them with the means for behavior change.

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