Open Access Open Badges Short report

ART adherence changes among patients in community substance use treatment: a preliminary analysis from MACH14

Marc I Rosen1*, Anne C Black1, Julia H Arnsten2, Jane M Simoni3, Glann J Wagner4, Kathleen Goggin5, Robert H Remien6, Carol E Golin7, Yan Wang8, David Bangsberg9, Honghu H Liu10 and the MACH14 Study Group

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT; VA Connecticut Healthcare System, West Haven, CT, 06516, USA

2 Departments of Medicine and Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Medical Center, Einstein/Montefiore Center for AIDS Research, Bronx, NY, 10467, USA

3 Department of Psychology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, 98195, USA

4 Rand Corporation Health Unit, Santa Monica, CA, 90407, USA

5 Department of Psychology, University of Missouri-Kansas City, Kansas City, MO, 64110, USA

6 HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies, NY State Psychiatric Institute and Columbia University, New York, NY, 10032, USA

7 UNC Departments of Medicine and Health Behavior & Health Education; UNC Center for AIDS Research, Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research, Chapel Hill, NC, 27599, USA

8 Department of Biostatistics, University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), Los Angeles, CA, 90095, USA

9 Mbarara University of Science and Technology; Harvard Medical School; Ragon Institute of MGH, Harvard, and MIT; Division of Global Health Equity at Brigham’s and Women’s Hospital; Massachusetts General Hospital Center for Global Health, Boston, MA, 02114, USA

10 Schools of Dentistry, Medicine and Public Health, University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), Los Angeles, CA, 90095, USA

For all author emails, please log on.

AIDS Research and Therapy 2012, 9:30  doi:10.1186/1742-6405-9-30

Published: 11 October 2012



Opiate substitution treatment has been associated with better adherence to lifesaving antiretroviral medications, but the impact of other substance abuse treatment on adherence is unknown.


In this study, 215 patients who had been in adherence-focused research studies provided electronically-measured adherence data and a measure of whether the patient had recently been in substance abuse treatment. Recent engagement in substance abuse treatment was independently associated with significantly higher adherence, after covarying for recent substance use and other factors potentially affecting adherence.


The findings suggest that substance abuse treatment is associated with better adherence. Potential mechanisms by which substance abuse treatment improves adherence, such as more stability or more future-orientation, require further study.

Medication adherence; AIDS; Substance abuse; Treatment