Theme: Social Science & Policy Research Year: 2016
TRAINING DRUG USERS IN OVERDOSE REVERSAL WITH INTRANASAL NALOXONE – A NEW APPROACH TO ADRESS OPIOID OVERDOSES AND OTHER GENERAL HEALTH PROBLEMS
Henrik Thiesen 1
Health Team for Homeless, Center for Vulnerable Adults and Families, Copenhagen City
Background: Overdoses among Danish drug users ranks among the highest in Europe. Based on results from Europa and the USA and an earlier pilot-project in Copenhagen we implemented a multi-site overdose-reversal and –prevention project in 2013 to test the possibility to involve drug users, staff and bystanders in training and active overdose reversal and if possible, to develop a more open communication between staff and drug users about drug use and related health-problems.
Methods: Implementation study of a 2-step model, adapted from other curricula, where trainers were trained centrally and the individual trainer then leads local training sessions for drug users and staff supervised by local MD. All included individuals are registered as well as their own experience with overdoses and overdoses among others. During training other healthrelated problems elicited by drug use are discussed.
Results: 487 individuals were included 158 of these were substance users. 47 overdoses were reversed over a period of 18 months, 50 % of these by drug users.156 responded to follow-up interview and among these 30% were drug users, 41% were staff and 37% police officers. Half of the staff reported a better relation with the drug-users, grounded in the fact that there generally was a more positive and equal approach in the naloxone training-sessions compared to day-to-day addiction treatment. Half of the interviewed drug users experienced a changed approach to their own drug use especially concerning the risks of multiple drug use.
Conclusion: Beside the positive outcome of 47 overdose reversals, an important secondary outcome is the experience of a better relation between staff and drug users and drug users’ experience of a higher awareness of risks taken. Overdose reversal training could also include other aspects of health related risk such as risks of infection and self-protection against these.
Disclosure of Interest Statement: NoneDownload abstract Download poster