243359 Implementing an integrated model of HIV/AIDS care including supervised injection services in Vancouver, BC

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Maxine Davis, BA , Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Rosalind Baltzer Turje, RN, MA , Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Ryan McNeil, MPhil , Interdisciplinary Studies Graduate Program, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Patrick McDougall, MPA , Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation, Vancouver, BC, Canada
ISSUE: Injection and non-injection drug use increase risk of HIV transmission, resulting in high HIV infection rates among drug-using populations. These populations face barriers to accessing HIV treatment and care, such as high levels of poverty and anti-drug policies. Injection and non-injection drug use are consequently linked to accelerated HIV disease progression, poor HIV outcomes, and high rates of AIDS-related mortality. Critical questions confronting HIV/AIDS health service organizations are the following: how can services delivery to injection and non-injection drug users be improved? Furthermore, how can they navigate the local context to implement new strategies? DESCRIPTION: The Dr. Peter Centre (DPC), a community-based HIV/AIDS health care organization in Vancouver, responded by incorporating medically-supervised drug use services (i.e.: use of pre-obtained illicit drugs under nurse supervision) into its integrated model of HIV/AIDS care. DPC initially consulted with experts and local and regional stakeholders, including the provincial college of nurses, and defined medically-supervised drug use as being within the scope of ethical nursing practice. DPC championed this approach when consulting with stakeholders. LESSONS LEARNED: Communication with experts helped to define the parameters of this service delivery model. Ongoing communication is needed with other stakeholder to garner support for medically-supervised drug use services. DPC continues to work toward its goal of achieving buy-in across the entire health system for these services. RECOMMENDATIONS: Organizations need to champion medically-supervised drug use services to a range of stakeholders, including law enforcement, in the initial phases and sustain dialogue during and after implementation to strengthen acceptance.

Learning Areas:
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Public health or related laws, regulations, standards, or guidelines
Public health or related nursing
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
1) Discuss the negative impact that the criminalization of injection and non-injection drug use have on the delivery of HIV/AIDS care to drug-using populations; 2) Describe the implementation of an integrated model of HIV/AIDS care that has integrated medically-supervised drug use services; and, 3) Explain the policy and practical considerations of implementing medically-supervised drug use services in a community health setting.

Keywords: HIV/AIDS, Drug Abuse

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Not Answered