Publication date: Sep 20, 2023
People with HIV (PWH) from racial/ethnic minority groups may be particularly vulnerable to the effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Exacerbated COVID-19-related stressors may lead to maladaptive coping mechanisms such as increased alcohol use. This study examined socioeconomic and psychosocial predictors of increased alcohol use during the first year of the COVID-19 Pandemic among PWH from racial/ethnic minority groups in South Florida. Data were collected from Ryan White Program clients during October 2020-January 2021 using a cross-sectional phone survey, and were analyzed using logistic regression modeling. Among 139 participants, 20% reported increased alcohol use. Findings showed that being unable to buy needed food (adjusted odds ratio [aOR]: 3. 37; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1. 01-11. 31) and spending more time caring for children (aOR: 5. 22, 95% CI: 1. 61-16. 88) was associated with increased alcohol use during the Pandemic. Providing support to alleviate food insecurity and manage caregiving burden during public health crises like the COVID-19 Pandemic might help prevent increases in alcohol use among PWH.