Skip to main content


B. Frank and Kathleen Polk Assistant Professor
Assistant Professor

Javier Cepeda, PhD, MPH, conducts research on the intersecting epidemics of substance use, HIV, and Hepatitis C virus, and justice involvement.

Contact Info

Research Interests

injection drug use; overdose; HIV; hepatitis C virus; incarceration; harm reduction; drug policy; law enforcement; economic evaluation; mathematical modeling; ALIVE study; Eastern Europe Central Asia;
Experiences & Accomplishments
Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
Yale School of Public Health
University of Wisconsin
My research focuses on characterizing the intersecting epidemics of substance use, infectious disease, and justice involvement. My primary research interests involve 1) understanding how structural factors, such as prohibitionist drug policy, impact risk of fatal and non-fatal overdose, HIV and hepatitis C virus transmission; 2) evaluating the facilitators and barriers of accessing harm reduction and treatment services among people who inject drugs and 3) evaluating the trajectories of substance use, infectious disease, and comorbidities among people who inject drugs. My current work involves application of methods drawn from epidemiology, prevention science, mathematical modeling, and economic evaluation, using data from studies based in the United States, Mexico, and Kyrgyzstan.
Select Publications
Publications from the last 5 years
  • Cepeda JA. Bórquez A, Magana C, Vo A, Rafful C, Rangel G, Medina-Mora E, Strathdee SA, Martin NK. Modeling integrated antiretroviral treatment and harm reduction services on HIV and overdose among people who inject drugs in Tijuana, Mexico. Journal of International AIDS Society. In press.
  • Cepeda JA, Eritsyan K, Vickerman P, Lyubimova A, Shegay M, Odinokova V, Beletsky L, Borquez A, Hickman M, Beyrer C, Martin NK. Potential impact of implementing and scaling up harm reduction and antiretroviral therapy on HIV prevalence and mortality and overdose deaths among people who inject drugs in two Russian cities: a modelling study. The Lancet HIV. 2018; 5(10):e578-e587.
  • Cepeda JA, Thomas DL, Astemborski J, Sulkowski MS, Kirk GD, Mehta SH. Increased mortality among persons with chronic hepatitis C with moderate or severe liver disease: a cohort study. Clin Infect Dis. 2017 Jul 15;65(2):235-243.
  • Olgin, G.K., Bórquez, A., Baker, P., Clairgue, E., Morales, M., Bañuelos, A., Arredondo, J., Harvey-Vera, A., Strathdee, S., Beletsky, L. and Cepeda, J.A., 2020. Preferences and acceptability of law enforcement initiated referrals for people who inject drugs: a mixed methods analysis. Substance Abuse Treatment, Prevention, and Policy, 15(1), pp.1-9.
  • Cepeda JA, Strathdee SA, Arredondo J, Mittal ML, Rocha T, Morales M, Clairgue E, Bustamante E, Abramovitz D, Artamonova I, Bañuelos A, Kerr T, Magis-Rodriguez CL, Beletsky L. Assessing police officers' attitudes and legal knowledge on behaviors that impact HIV transmission among people who inject drugs. Int J Drug Policy. 2017 Oct 10;50:56-63. doi: 10.1016/j.drugpo.2017.09.009.