REACH graduate research assistant Ian Duncan presented at the annual American Society of Criminology conference in November. Duncan’s presentation titled “Hepatitis C Serosorting Behaviors: An Urban/Rural Comparison” focused on the comparisons of serosorting behaviors in rural and urban Puerto Rico among injection drug users.
Ian Duncan also authored a paper published in the October issue of Harm Reduction titled “Needle acquisition patterns, network risk and social capital among rural PWID in Puerto Rico.” The article is a recent addition to the insights resulting from REACH’s continued involvement in understanding communities of injection drug users in Puerto Rico. Duncan analyzed the network functions of PWID’s source of needles and injection partners. His findings demonstrated that “sources of syringes do serve to multiply risk of infection caused by multi-partner injection concurrency.” More specifically, Duncan found that purchasing needles off the street from a seller was positively associated with having more injection partners. The REACH team’s findings complicate the previous understanding of social capital among drug users and provide new challenges for increasing access to safe injection equipment.