4167.0 Making drug abuse services work for vulnerable populations in the 21st century

Tuesday, November 10, 2009: 12:30 PM
Individuals diagnosed with a substance use disorder (SUD) and particularly those with a co-occurring mental disorder or HIV infection, often experience a challenge when they attempt to access treatment and services. These services are often not easily accessible to these vulnerable groups, including racial/ethnic minorities; and even when services are accessible, they are often underutilized because potential clients feel they are stigmatized and discriminated against. Research has shown that substance abuse treatment outcomes are improved when specific needs of the population are met. This panel presents strategies and techniques used to provide services to minority and underserved populations of drug users. The first presentation highlights ethical issues to be identified in randomized clinical trials research, particularly with illicit drug users. Importantly, the perceptions of active street drug users will be discussed along with implications for research ethics planning. The second presentation shares findings from a large nationally representative dataset that addresses the effect of Hispanic ethnicity on the etiology and course of SUD and treatment-seeking patterns of individuals with SUD. Recommendations are made for developing empirically-informed interventions to improve prevention and treatment of SUD in Hispanics. The third presentation addresses the lack of treatment engagement in outpatient settings and factors that affect aftercare among a sample of youth recently discharged from hospital for a substance abuse and/or mental health disorder. The fourth presentation highlights creative technological treatment approaches being utilized with Latino drug users with co-occurring disorders in a rural area.
Session Objectives: 1. Discuss ethical challenges associated with randomized clinical trials research involving economically disadvantaged street drug users. 2. Describe the barriers to treatment services experienced by vulnerable populations, including racial/ethnic minorities and youth diagnosed with a substance use or mental health disorder. 3. Identify different measures of quality of care based on administrative records.
Celia Fisher, PhD , Carlos Blanco, MD, PhD , Elizabeth Gifford, PhD and Kenny House, LCAS, CCS

See individual abstracts for presenting author's disclosure statement and author's information.

Organized by: Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drugs
Endorsed by: Social Work

CE Credits: Medical (CME), Health Education (CHES), Nursing (CNE), Public Health (CPH)