La Voz: HIV Mobile Prevention and Clinical Care for Latino Injection Drug Users

SSW Investigator(s):

Lena Lundgren, PhD (PI), Maryann Amodeo, PhD (Co-PI)

Major Outside Collaborators:

Tapestry Health

Funding Source:

Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) for years 2006–2011

Project Description:

This five-year longitudinal research effort examines whether mobile HIV outreach, education, testing, and mental health counseling services reduce HIV risk behaviors (e.g., sharing needles) among the target population of Latino injection drug users. The intervention services are provided by Tapestry Health, a leading community-based health care center in western Massachusetts. This region has one of the highest HIV incidence rates related to injection drug use in the nation, with the Latino population disproportionately affected. Through this new effort, La Voz has acquired and adapted a van to serve as a mobile program facility where outreach workers, a nurse practitioner, and a mental health counselor provide a wide range of physical and mental health screenings, services, and referrals. The Center for Addictions Research and Services team will conduct a comprehensive outcome evaluation of this effort, as well as train La Voz staff on using evidence based-practices over the five-year period.