HIV risk and awareness and interest in pre-exposure and post-exposure prophylaxis among sheltered women in Miami

Susanne Doblecki-Lewis, Larissa Lester, Bryanna Schwartz, Constance Collins, Rai Johnson, Erin Kobetz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Pre- and non-occupational post-exposure prophylaxis for the prevention of HIV infection are recommended for adults at substantial risk of HIV. Women experiencing homelessness have increased risk of HIV infection compared with stably-housed women. We conducted a survey of 74 sheltered women at Lotus House Women's Shelter (Lotus House) in Miami to assess risk behaviour as well as knowledge and perception of pre- and non-occupational post-exposure prophylaxis in this population. Of surveyed women, 58.1% engaged in vaginal and/or anal sex while sheltered, and of sexually-active women 55.4% reported inconsistent condom use. 83.8% of women reported no concern regarding HIV acquisition due to their behaviour. Few women surveyed (20.8%) had previously heard of pre- or non-occupational post-exposure prophylaxis. The majority (58.3%) of respondents indicated receptiveness to these prevention methods when introduced. Those indicating that they would consider pre- or non-occupational post-exposure prophylaxis were significantly younger than those indicating that they would not consider these prevention strategies (p = 0.004). Education and referral for pre- and non-occupational post-exposure prophylaxis should be considered for sheltered women at risk of HIV infection. Additional research to optimise implementation of biomedical prevention strategies in this population is needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)873-881
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of STD and AIDS
Issue number10
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016


  • HIV prevention
  • antiretrovirals
  • homelessness
  • post-exposure prophylaxis
  • pre-exposure prophylaxis
  • women

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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