AIDS and behavior 21(7) 1868-1877 doi 10.1007/s10461-016-1640-2
Substance use is highly prevalent among youth living with HIV (YLWH) and negatively impacts HIV care. This study sought to determine whether the CRAFFT (Car, Relax, Alone, Forget, Friends, and Trouble), designed to screen for problematic substance use, is reliably associated with substance use behaviors among YLWH. A cross-sectional sample of 2216 youth (ages 12-26) were recruited through the adolescent medicine trials network for HIV/AIDS Interventions. Participants completed a self-administered survey. Over half screened positive on the CRAFFT (i.e., ≥2). Among frequent substance users, those older in age, behaviorally infected, with history of incarceration or unstably housed were more likely to screen positive on the CRAFFT. Study findings suggest that the CRAFFT reliably identifies youth who use substances. Thus, screening measures such as the CRAFFT should be utilized routinely in HIV clinical settings for youth.