Browsing by Author "Jones, Stephanie"
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- ItemOpen AccessBeliefs, attitudes and experiences of virtual overdose monitoring services from the perspectives of people who use substances in Canada: a qualitative study(2023-06-24) Marshall, Tyler; Viste, Dylan; Jones, Stephanie; Kim, Julia; Lee, Amanda; Jafri, Farah; Krieg, Oona; Ghosh, S. M.Abstract Background Solitary use of substances is a risk factor for substance use-related mortality. Novel e-health harm reduction interventions such as virtual overdose monitoring services (VOMS) have emerged in North America to improve access to emergency overdose support for people who use substances (PWUS). To date, little research has been published, and the perspectives of PWUS are needed to inform evaluation and policy efforts. Objective To explore the beliefs, values and perceptions of PWUS around using and accessing VOMS in Canada. Methods A qualitative study following grounded theory methodology was conducted. Using existing peer networks, purposive and snowball sampling was conducted to recruit PWUS (≥ 18 years) with previous experience with VOMS. Thematic analysis was used to analyze twenty-three interviews. Several methods were employed to enhance rigor, such as independent data coding and triangulation. Results Twenty-three one-on-one telephone interviews of PWUS with previous experience with VOMS were completed and analyzed. The following themes emerged: (1) feelings of optimism around VOMS to save lives; (2) privacy/confidentiality was highly valued due to stigma and fear of arrest; (3) concerns with reliable cell phones negatively impacting VOMS uptake; (4) concerns around emergency response times, specifically in rural/remote communities; (5) desire for trusting relationships with VOMS operators; (6) importance of mental health supports and referrals to psychosocial services; and (7) possible limited uptake due to low public awareness of VOMS. Conclusion This qualitative study provided novel insights about the VOMS from the perspectives of PWUS. PWUS generally felt optimistic about the potential of VOMS as a suitable harm reduction intervention, but several potential barriers around accessing VOMS were identified that may limit uptake. Future research is warranted.
- ItemOpen AccessFeasibility and acceptability of inserts promoting virtual overdose monitoring services (VOMS) in naloxone kits: a qualitative study(2023-05-08) Safi, Fahad; Rioux, William; Rider, Nathan; Fornssler, Barbara; Jones, Stephanie; Ghosh, S. M.Abstract Background In response to the ongoing opioid epidemic, there have been efforts to develop novel harm reduction strategies alongside scaling of currently implemented programs. Virtual overdose monitoring services (VOMS) are a novel intervention which aims to reduce substance-related mortality through technology for those who are out of reach of current supervised consumption sites. Scaling of naloxone programs presents a unique opportunity to promote VOMS to people at risk of substance-related mortality. This study aims to explore the feasibility and acceptability of naloxone kit inserts in promoting awareness of VOMS. Method We used purposive and snowball sampling to recruit 52 key informants, including people who use drugs (PWUD) with experience using VOMS (n = 16), PWUD with no prior experience using VOMS (n = 9), family members of PWUD (n = 5), healthcare and emergency services professionals (n = 10), community-based harm reduction organizations (n = 6), and VOMS administrators/peer support workers (n = 6). Two evaluators completed semi-structured interviews. Interview transcripts were analyzed using thematic analysis informed to identify key themes. Results Four key interrelated themes emerged, including the acceptability of naloxone kit inserts to promote VOMS, best practices for implementation, key messaging to include within promotional materials and facilitators to dissemination of harm reduction material. Participants highlighted that messaging should be promoted both inside and outside the kits, should be concise, provide basic information about VOMS and can be facilitated through current distribution streams. Messaging could further be used to draw attention to local harm reduction services and could be promoted on other supplies, including lighters and safer consumption supplies. Conclusion Findings demonstrate that it is acceptable to promote VOMS within naloxone kits and highlight interviewees preferred ways to do so. Key themes that emerged from interviewees can be used to inform the dissemination of harm reduction information, including VOMS and bolster current strategies for reducing illicit drug overdose.
- ItemOpen AccessPerspectives of healthcare workers on the integration of overdose detection technologies in acute care settings(2024-01-12) Rioux, William; Kilby, Kyle; Jones, Stephanie; Joshi, Pamela; Vandenberg, Stephanie; Ghosh, S. M.Abstract Background People who use drugs (PWUD) face disproportionately high rates of hospitalizations and patient-initiated discharge (leaving against medical advice), explained by a combination of stigma, withdrawal, judgment, blame, and improper pain management. In addition, evidence has shown that despite abstinence-based policies within healthcare settings, PWUD continue to use their substances in healthcare environments often hidden away from hospital staff, resulting in fatalities. Various novel overdose detection technologies (ODTs) have been developed with early adoption in a few settings to reduce the morbidity and mortality from risky substance use patterns within healthcare environments. Our study aimed to gain the perspectives of healthcare workers across Canada on implementing ODTs within these settings. Method We used purposive and snowball sampling to recruit 16 healthcare professionals to participate in semi-structured interviews completed by two evaluators. Interview transcripts were analyzed using thematic analysis to identify key themes and subthemes. Results Participants recognized ODTs as a potentially feasible solution for increasing the safety of PWUD in healthcare settings. Our results suggest the mixed ability of these services to decrease stigma and build rapport with PWUD. Participants further highlighted barriers to implementing these services, including pre-established policies, legal recourse, and coordination of emergency responses to suspected overdoses. Lastly, participants highlight that ODTs should only be one part of a multifaceted approach to reducing harm in healthcare settings and could currently be integrated into discharge planning. Conclusion Healthcare professionals from across Canada found ODTs to be an acceptable intervention, but only as part of a larger suite of harm reduction interventions to reduce the harms associated with illicit drug use in healthcare settings. In contrast, participants noted institutional policies, stigma on behalf of healthcare workers and leadership would present significant challenges to their uptake and dissemination.
- ItemOpen AccessPreference for hotline versus mobile application/countdown-based mobile overdose response services: a qualitative study(2024-02-05) Rioux, William; Teare, Adrian; Rider, Nathan; Jones, Stephanie; Ghosh, S. M.Abstract Background In response to the exacerbated rates of morbidity and mortality associated with the overlapping overdose and COVID-19 epidemics, novel strategies have been developed, implemented, operationalized and scaled to reduce the harms resulting from this crisis. Since the emergence of mobile overdose response services (MORS), two strategies have aimed to help reduce the mortality associated with acute overdose including staffed hotline-based services and unstaffed timer-based services. In this article, we aim to gather the perspectives of various key interest groups on these technologies to determine which might best support service users. Methods Forty-seven participants from various interested groups including people who use substances who have and have not used MORS, healthcare workers, family members, harm reduction employees and MORS operators participated in semi-structured interviews. Transcripts were coded and analyzed using a thematic analysis approach. Results Four major themes emerged regarding participant perspectives on the differences between services, namely differences in connection, perceived safety, privacy and accessibility, alongside features that are recommended for MORS in the future. Conclusions Overall, participants noted that individuals who use substances vary in their desire for connection during a substance use session offered by hotline and timer-based service modalities. Participants perceived hotline-based approaches to be more reliable and thus potentially safer than their timer-based counterparts but noted that access to technology is a limitation of both approaches.
- ItemOpen AccessUnderstanding the barriers and facilitators to implementing and sustaining Mobile Overdose Response Services from the perspective of Canadian key interest groups: a qualitative study(2024-02-02) Seo, Boogyung; Rider, Nathan; Rioux, William; Teare, Adrian; Jones, Stephanie; Taplay, Pamela; Monty Ghosh, S.Abstract Introduction Unregulated supply of fentanyl and adulterants continues to drive the overdose crisis. Mobile Overdose Response Services (MORS) are novel technologies that offer virtual supervised consumption to minimize the risk of fatal overdose for those who are unable to access other forms of harm reduction. However, as newly implemented services, they are also faced with numerous limitations. The aim of this study was to examine the facilitators and barriers to the adoption of MORS in Canada. Methods A total of 64 semi-structured interviews were conducted between November 2021 and April 2022. Participants consisted of people who use substances (PWUS), family members of PWUS, health care professionals, harm reduction workers, MORS operators, and members of the general public. Inductive thematic analysis was used to identify the major themes and subthemes. Results Respondents revealed that MORS facilitated a safe, anonymous, and nonjudgmental environment for PWUS to seek harm reduction and other necessary support. It also created a new sense of purpose for operators to positively contribute to the community. Further advertising and promotional efforts were deemed important to increase its awareness. However, barriers to MORS implementation included concerns regarding privacy/confidentiality, uncertainty of funding, and compassion fatigue among the operators. Conclusion Although MORS were generally viewed as a useful addition to the currently existing harm reduction services, it’s important to monitor and tackle these barriers by engaging the perspectives of key interest groups.