Overview and Inventory of HHS Efforts to Assist Incarcerated and Reentering Individuals and their Families . Seek, Test, and Treat: Addressing HIV in the Criminal Justice System


Type of Activity: Research

Funding Mechanism: Grant

Total Available Funding:

Number of Awards: 9

Average Award Amount (current year): $925,000

Length of Project Period: Varies

Federal Partners: NIAID and NIMH

Summary: Seek, Test, and Treat: Addressing HIV in the Criminal Justice System is an initiative intended for funding in FY 2011 to empirically test the “seek, test, and treat” paradigm in criminal justice populations. This model involves reaching out to high risk, hard to reach groups who have not been recently tested (seek), engaging them in HIV testing (test), and initiating, monitoring, and maintaining HAART for those testing positive (treat).  Researchers will develop, implement, and test strategies to increase HIV testing and the provision of HAART to HIV seropositive individuals involved with the criminal justice system, with particular focus on continuity of HAART during and after community reentry following incarceration.  Key outcome measures include linkage to care (e.g., seen at care center post-release) and viral suppression (e.g., proportion with undetectable viral load 6 months or more after initiation of ART).  Researchers will conduct intervention research at the individual, organizational, or system level that leads to effective approaches for expanding access to HIV testing and HAART treatment in the criminal justice system and in community organizations working with criminal justice systems and populations. 

Background: The overrepresentation of both drug abuse and HIV within criminal justice populations demands better strategies to integrate services and improve outcomes for both. Fourteen percent of HIV-infected individuals pass through correctional facilities each year. Yet criminal justice-based services and health and social services offered in the community remain fragmented. Prison settings offer a good opportunity to integrate substance use treatment with early HIV diagnosis and initiation of HAART therapy and will offer a fertile testing ground for this innovative strategy — to include reliable maintenance of treatment in the community.

Current grantees:

A Randomized Controlled Trial and Cohort Study of HIV Testing and Linkage to Care (Principal Investigator: Michael Scott Gordon, DPA, Friends Research Institute, Inc., Baltimore, MD).

Effectiveness of Peer Navigation to Link Released HIV+ Jail Inmates to HIV Care (Principal Investigator: William E. Cunningham, MD, University of California at Los Angeles, CA).

HIV, Buprenorphine, and the Criminal Justice System (Principal Investigator: Frederick Lewis Altice, MD, Yale University, New Haven, CT).

Improving Linkage to HIV Care Following Release from Incarceration (Principal Investigators: Josiah Rich, MD, Miriam Hospital, Providence, RI; Liza Solomon, PhD, Abt Associates, Inc., Cambridge, MA).

Naltrexone for Opioid Dependent Released HIV+ Criminal Justice Populations (Principal Investigator: Sandra Ann Springer, MD, Yale University, New Haven, CT).

RCT (Randomized Control Trial) of an augmented test, treat, link, & retain model for NC and Texas Prisoners (Principal Investigators: David Wohl, MD, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, NC; Patrick Flynn PhD, Texas Christian University, Ft. Worth, TX; Carol Golin, MD, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, NC; Kevin Knight, PhD, Texas Christian University, Ft. Worth, TX).

Seek, Test, Treat: An Integrated Jail-Prison-Community Model for Illinois (Principal Investigators: Lawrence Ouellet PhD, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL; Michael Puisis DO, Cermak Health Services, Chicago, IL; Jeremy Young MD, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL).

Seek, Test, and Treat Strategies (Principal Investigator: David W. Seal, PhD, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI).

Seek, Test, Treat Strategies for Vietnamese Drug Users: A Random Controlled Trial (Principal Investigator: Vu Minh Quan, MD, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD).

START Together: HIV Testing and Treatment in and after Jail (Principal Investigator: Stanley Sacks, PhD, National Development and Research Institutes, New York City, NY).

CARE Corrections: Technology for Jail HIV/HCV Testing, Linkage, and Care (TLC) (Principal Investigators: Curt Beckwith, M.D., Miriam Hospital, Providence, RI; Irene Kuo, Ph.D., The George Washington University; Ann Kurth, Ph.D., New York University  (funded jointly with NIDA and NIAID))

Finding, Testing and Treating High-risk Probationers and Parolees with HIV (Principal Investigator:  Alexander Kral, Ph.D., Research Triangle Institute, Research Triangle Park, NC (Funded by NIMH))

Location(s) of Projects: Baltimore, MD; Chicago, IL; New York, NY; Washington DC, New Haven, CT; Los Angeles, CA; Madison, WI

Evaluation Activities: Peer-reviewed publications to disseminate scientific data and findings; presentations of findings at scientific meetings.

Future Prospects: Future prospects dependent upon receiving highly meritorious investigator-initiated projects and funds available.


Susan Weiss, Ph.D.
Phone: (301) 443-6071
Email: susan.weiss@nih.gov

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