“Money Helps”: People who inject drugs and their perceptions of financial compensation and its ethical implications

Roberto Abadie, Brandon Brown, Celia B. Fisher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This study documents how people who inject drugs (PWID) in rural Puerto Rico perceive payments for participating in HIV epidemiological studies. In-depth interviews were conducted among a subset (n = 40) of active PWID older than 18 years of age who had been previously enrolled in a much larger study (N = 360). Findings suggest that financial compensation was the main motivation for initially enrolling in the parent study. Then, as trust in the researchers developed, participants came to perceive compensation as part of a reciprocal exchange in which they assisted researchers by providing a trustful account of their experiences and researchers reciprocated with financial support.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)607-620
Number of pages14
JournalEthics and Behavior
Issue number8
StatePublished - Nov 17 2019



  • PWID
  • Puerto Rico
  • ethics
  • financial compensation
  • perception

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Psychology(all)

Cite this