256803 Using multiple recruiting sources to reach untapped segments of the recovery community in research

Monday, October 29, 2012

Alexandre Laudet, PhD , Center for the Study of Addictions and Recovery, National Development and Research Institutes, Inc., New York City, NY
Lee Ann Kaskutas, DrPH , Alcohol Research Group, Public Health Institute, Emeryville, CA
Thomassina Borkman, PhD , Alcohol Research Group, Public Health Institute, Emeryville, CA
Lois Ritter, PhD , Alcohol Research Group, Public Health Institute, Emeryville, CA
M.N. Subbaraman , Alcohol Research Group, Public Health Institute, Emeryville, CA
The broad construct of recovery is increasingly guiding substance use services and policy. Research on recovery remains scant, hindering service development. Studies often focus on treatment populations that represent only one ‘recovery path'. Preparatory to developing a recovery scale, we used a multi-source recruiting strategy to maximize the diversity of individuals surveyed about their recovery experiences. Recruiting was conducted via general media (e.g, Craig's List: 42%), treatment alumni groups and recovery services (17%) grassroots organizations (e.g., Faces & Voices of Recovery-31%) and word of mouth (10%). Demographics, recovery paths and definition were examined as a function of recruiting source. The sample, representing 27 US states, was diverse in race, gender, age, education and residential setting; 70% reported treatment + 12 step as their recovery path, 15% 12-step only, 3% treatment only, and 12%: neither. Key differences were observed across recruiting sources in (a) Demographics including race and age; (b) Recovery paths- e.g., 79% of those who reported neither treatment nor 12-step were media recruited while 68% of grassroots subjects had gone to treatment + 12-step; (c) Recovery definition: e.g., Significantly fewer media recruited (65%) selected total drug/alcohol abstinence as their recovery definition (vs. more moderate goals) than did persons recruited through other sources (85%). Key sample characteristics differ across recruiting sources; in particular, general media recruiting reached an untapped segment of the recovery population and may represent a cost effective strategy worth incorporating in future recovery studies to maximize the diversity of experienced surveyed.

Learning Areas:
Chronic disease management and prevention
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe various paths to recovery from substance use disorders 2. Identify segments of the recovery community that are typically under-represented in research and services 3. Develop strategies to maximize the representativeness of recovery samples in their studies and programs

Keywords: Recovery, Substance Abuse

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the principal or co-principal investigator of multiple federally funded grants focusing on scale development and strategies to promote ATOD recovery
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.