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Peer driven or driven peers? A rapid review of peer involvement of people who use drugs in HIV and harm reduction services in low‑ and middle‑income countries

by Judy Chang, Shaun Shelly, Machteld Busz, Claudia Stoicescu, Arif Rachman Iryawan, Dinara Madybaeva, Yuri de Boer and Andy Guise

This rapid review written for the Harm Reduction Journal, conceived and written by INPUD’s Executive Director Judy Chang, Andy Guise and Shaun Shelly along with community and civil society leaders examines available literature with the goal of critically assessing the evidence in support of increasing peer involvement in low and middle income settings. The findings of this rapid review include:

  • Peer involvement in HIV and harm reduction services in low and middle income settings leads to positive health outcomes.
  • The context of peer involvement is shaped by contexts of criminalisation, stigma and resource scarcity.
  • Peer outreach interventions work through building trust, community knowledge, and bridge mechanisms to counter criminalisation and constraining service delivery environments, in turn contributing towards decreasing stigma and discrimination as well as the quality of services.
  • There is a need to expand the range of peer roles and capacity of people who use drugs within HIV and harm reduction programmes.
  • Global
  • Capacity building
  • Harm reduction
  • Prevention
  • Injecting drug users (IDUs)
  • People who use drugs (PUD)

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