Barriers to access and willingness to participate in an intervention program to reduce the incidence of HIV and Hepatitis C among drug dependent youth

In her Masters research Cari Miller showed there is a high prevalence and incidence of HIV and Hepatitis C among young injection users in Vancouver. Those at highest risk for HIV are young females and Aboriginal youth. Her research suggested that preventing infection requires a complex response, addressing risky drug and sexual behaviours. Cari is building on her earlier research to investigate the barriers to accessing current prevention tools such as clean needles and condoms. As well, she is examining the willingness of youth to participate in a behavioural intervention to reduce the risk of HIV and Hepatitis C. The research will inform policy on current methods of prevention and possibly help to develop new ones. Cari’s work could also help empower youth to better care for their health and for the health of their peers.