Online Program

Prescription for Discharge: A Prescription drug abuse prevention program for the U.S. Navy

Monday, November 2, 2015 : 12:50 p.m. - 1:10 p.m.

Kristina Cook, MA, Communication; PMP, Infrastructure and Military Health Team, Booz Allen Hamilton, Mclean, VA
Teha Kennard, MS, Booz Allen Hamilton, Washington, DC
Erin Brennan, Social Marketing Professional, Infrastructure and Military Health Team, Booz Allen Hamilton, Mclean, VA
Issue: Prescription drug abuse prevention is recognized by both the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as a national priority. Although the U.S. Navy's zero tolerance policy on drugs has resulted in an overall decline in illegal drug abuse by Sailors over the past decade, prescription drug abuse is on the rise. Amphetamine positives have increased 34 percent and oxycodone positives by 23 percent over the past three years.

Description: The U.S. Navy’s “Prescription for Discharge” campaign was designed to address this rising prevalence of prescription drug abuse by applying the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Health Communication model. Through interactive design and delivery methodologies, the campaign has successfully built awareness in its target audience -- 18- to 24-year-old Sailors.  

Lessons Learned: Focus group feedback enabled campaign designers to choose more effective (audience-friendly) messaging and delivery methods. Specific campaign tactics included a “test your knowledge” quiz; the placement of permanent drug drop-off boxes at 11 sites; social media engagement; community events and online public service announcements (PSA). These adjustments resulted in 22 national articles; 470 social media engagement actions; 3 grassroot events; 1,283 campaign material downloads; 4,157 webpage views and 10,800+ Flickr album views to date (February 2015).

Recommendations: Community-based formative research can successfully enhance the creation of health interventions targeting 18 - 24 year-olds. Future public health campaigns targeting the issue of prescription drug abuse can also integrate perspectives from the medical and/or pharmaceutical communities.

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Occupational health and safety
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related education

Learning Objectives:
Identify and explain the rise of prescription drug abuse and misuse in military and civilian communities. Describe the importance of formative research in the development and design of prevention campaigns and interventions targeting 18-24 year-olds Demonstrate how evidence-based health communication and social marketing techniques can increase awareness of prescription drug abuse among 18 to 24-year-olds.

Keyword(s): Health Promotion and Education, Drug Abuse Prevention and Safety

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Kristina Cook has a variety of project management, health communications and public health campaign experience. Currently, Ms. Cook serves as the project manager for the National Intrepid Center of Excellence’s Program Management Office and the Navy Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention Office’s award-winning “Keep What You’ve Earned” campaign. Formerly, she supported Federal clients through health communications and public health campaigns including research, education and materials development, social marketing and behavior change tactics.
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.