255205 Examining the Utility of the Theory of Planned Behavior in Explaining the Diversion of Prescription Stimulant Medications among Undergraduate Students

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Andrew Robert Gallucci, PhD, ATC, CSCS , Baylor University, Waco, TX
Stuart Usdan, PhD , Department of Health Sciences, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL
Deidre Leaver-Dunn, PhD, LAT, ATC , Department of Health Sciences, The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL
Brad Lian, PhD , College of Human & Environmental Services, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL
Jeri Zemke, PhD, LAT, ATC , Department of Health Sciences, The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to assess the ability of the constructs of the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) in explaining the diversion of prescription stimulants during the lifetime of undergraduate students between the ages of 18 and 24. Methods: 1,024 undergraduates between the ages of 18 and 24 completed a paper-and-pencil in class survey. This survey consisted of 88 questions designed to assess the prevalence, motivations, and the indirect determinants of the Theory Planned Behavior that were significantly associated with the misuse and diversion of prescription stimulant medications. Results: From the total sample, 142 participants had a current prescription for a stimulant medication and completed the required survey questions. From the sample, 44.3% of prescription holders had sold their medication and 76.5% had given it away during their lifetime. A logistic regression identified a significant model (df =10, x2=41.947, p<0.001) that correctly classified 72.5% of cases and explained 37.3% of the variance. Of the variables entered into the regression, only a history of nonmedical use (OR=3.738, CI= 1.592-8.778, p<0.01) and a positive attitude toward diversion (OR= 2.306, CI=1.353-3.931, p<0.01) were significant predictors of lifetime diversion among undergraduates. Conclusions: Results identified diversion rates that were higher than those previously published rates. However, outcomes of the model suggests that changing an undergraduate's attitude toward diversion and preventing misuse of prescription stimulants may reduce the diversion behavior. However, the constructs of TPB did not adequately explain the behavior. Future research should examine the utility of other theories in explaining diversion.

Learning Areas:
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
1.To assess the extent to which social norms among undergraduates, attitudes about diversion, and perceived behavioral control can explain the diversion of prescription stimulants among undergraduate students. 2.To identify other significant risk factors associated with the diversion of prescription stimulants.

Keywords: Prescription Drug Use Patterns, College Students

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I was instrumental in the design, implementation, and data collection associated with this study.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.