Intervening on the intersecting issues of intimate partner violence, substance use, and HIV: A review of Social Intervention Group's (SIG) syndemic-focused interventions for women

Louisa Gilbert, Claudia Stoicescu, Dawn Goddard-Eckrich, Anindita Dasgupta, Ariel Richer, Shoshana N. Benjamin, Elwin Wu, Nabila El-Bassel

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Intimate partner violence (IPV), HIV, and substance use are serious intersecting public health issues. This paper aims to describe the Social Intervention Group (SIG)'s syndemic-focused interventions for women that address the co-occurrence of IPV, HIV, and substance use, referred to as the SAVA syndemic. We reviewed SIG intervention studies from 2000 to 2020 that evaluated the effectiveness of syndemic-focused interventions which addressed two or more outcomes related to reducing IPV, HIV, and substance use among different populations of women who use drugs. This review identified five interventions that co-targeted SAVA outcomes. Of the five interventions, four showed a significant reduction in risks for two or more outcomes related to IPV, substance use, and HIV. The significant effects of SIG's interventions on IPV, substance use, and HIV outcomes among different populations of women demonstrate the potential of using syndemic theory and methods in guiding effective SAVA-focused interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)178-192
Number of pages15
JournalResearch on Social Work Practice
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2023


  • alcohol use
  • drug use
  • intervention science
  • intimate partner violence
  • SAVA
  • syndemic
  • syndemic theory

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