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Needle fixation profile : an exploratory assessment of applicability in the Australian context
journal contributionposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by S Hinton, Tania Signal, V Ghea-White
Background: Needle fixation has the potential to undermine harm-reduction efforts and may affect up to one-quarter of all injecting drug users (IDUs). Being largely ignored in the extant literature, the majority of research on this phenomenon has been carried out exclusively in Cardiff, Wales. Objectives: The current exploratory study examined the applicability of needle fixation in a population of Australian IDUs to determine whether Australian IDUs were familiar with the behaviors and secondary gains that have been found to be associated with needle fixation and are assessed by the needle fixation profile (NEFPRO). Methods: A mixed-method design utilizing semi-structured interviews and questionnaire data was employed. Results: Australian IDUs were aware of or had experience with the behaviors and secondary gains that have been found to be associated with needle fixation. A number of other behaviors and secondary gains associated with injecting were discussed by participants during the semi-structured interviews. Conclusions/Importance: This study offers preliminary support for the use of NEFPRO as a clinical and research tool within Australia. To ensure that all avenues toward harm reduction are being explored, it would be fruitful to engage in further research concerning the cross-cultural representations of needle fixation specifically as well as the general influence of needle fixation in perpetuating injecting drug use.