Stigma & the Opioid Crisis

cobblestone pathway

Co-principal Investigator for a national research project on Stigma and the Opioid Crisis.

Brief Description:  This is a two-year, two-phase study on Canada’s opioid and overdose crisis. The project has three main research objectives:

  1. Gain a better understanding of the role of stigmatization processes in service delivery for opioid use and other drug use problems, that may assist governments and others with various service delivery and policy decisions (phase 1)
  2. Identify the specific learning needs of health providers and other first responders relating to the stigmatization of persons with opioid and other substance use problems, and identify promising strategies that can be used to guide the implementation of effective anti-stigma interventions (phase 1)
  3. Develop a psychometrically sound measure (i.e., a scale) that can be used to measure the success of interventions and training programs for first responders relating opioid and other substance use problems.  (phase 2).
  4. Identify and systematically evaluate promising anti-stigma programs, interventions and strategies (phase 3)

Final products developed from this research include the publication of findings in the peer reviewed literature, a research report containing an identification of learning needs, recommendations for change, and knowledge of promising approaches and programs to improve care and services to people with opioid and other substance use problems, and a publicly available validated measure to assess beliefs and attitudes towards people with opioid and other substance use problems.