Intervention Research Advancing Care Equity (iRACE)

care equity

The goal of our intervention research is to improve patient care among medically underserved populations through evidence-based behavioral interventions in the context of learning healthcare systems. Guided by a dissemination and implementation science framework, we aim to understand and intervene on factors that influence health outcomes among patients coping with substance misuse, depression, HIV infection and other chronic conditions. We investigate the influence of individual, social, and structural barriers using an interdisciplinary team approach.

For more information regarding the iRACE laboratory, please contact Lab Director Dr. Nicole Ennis at


Feasibility of SBIRT for Older Underserved HIV+ Adults in the Primary Care Setting

  • Principal Investigator: Nicole Ennis, Ph.D.

  • Specific Aims: Although screening, brief intervention and referral to treatment (SBIRT) is an evidence based technique that has been shown in some health care settings to reduce substance use, evidence for efficacy of SBIRT in HIV care settings is limited. HIV+ individuals evidence a high prevalence of substance use but access to intervention is limited. Substance use increases risk for poor treatment adherence and is a recognized co-factor of HIV transmission. Therefore, there is a need to develop treatment options that are effective for HIV+ individuals. The implementation of these interventions within specialized HIV care settings is ideal as integrated care has been shown to optimize health outcomes. The primary study outcomes are feasibility and acceptability of the SBIRT model. Secondary outcomes include engagement in substance use treatment and reduction in alcohol and drug use. Individual reductions in alcohol and drug use can have significant effects on public health and safety when observed over a large population at risk for substance use problems. With wider dissemination statewide, a relatively low-cost intervention such as SBIRT could offer demonstrated benefits in this population.

  • Funding Source: National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) under K23DA039769

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