Online Program

Exploring the feasibility of mobile texting for recovery support among substance abusing youth

Monday, November 4, 2013

Rachel Gonzales, PhD, MPH, Integrated Substance Abuse Programs, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, Los Angeles, CA
Allison Moffitt, BA, Department of Psychology, Azusa Pacific University, Azusa, CA
M. Douglas Anglin, PhD, Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs (ISAP), Los Angeles, CA
Deborah Glik, ScD, Fielding School of Public Health, University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), Los Angeles, CA
The purpose of this qualitative study was to understand perceptions about mobile-based continuing care among substance abusing youth (12-24 years old) in treatment. Eight focus groups were conducted in outpatient and residential publicly funded treatment programs in Los Angeles County, California. Thematic data analysis revealed that roughly 70% of youth positively endorsed text messaging as a viable method for continuing care, 20% expressed ambivalent feelings, and 10% conveyed dislike. Seven major themes emerged from focus groups related to the types of text message areas youth consider important for a continuing care program to include: appraisal (90%), lifestyle (85%), motivation (80%), coping (75%), confidence (65%), inspiration (55%), and resources (50%). Youth views about logistical application of a mobile continuing care intervention are also discussed. These findings suggest that text messaging to may serve as a viable engaging opportunity that is appropriate and sensitive to the needs of youth with substance use problems.

Learning Areas:

Chronic disease management and prevention
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs

Learning Objectives:
Describe outcomes of qualitative focus groups with substance using youth in Los Angeles County. Discuss treatment-involved youth's perceptions of text-based program efficacy for preventing post-treatment relapse. Identify seven types of texts that youth identified as important to include in a text-based recovery program.

Keyword(s): Adolescents, Recovery

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Rachel Gonzales is an Assistant Research Psychologist at the UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs. Her training is in psychology, public health and addiction medicine. She has extensive experience in research and evaluation of adolescent and adult substance-abuse programs.
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.