Scope and 25% of people using them long

Scope
of Problem (1-2 Pages)

 

Drug
use among college student continues to be a public health issue. North America
is facing an epidemic of opioid addiction and opioid overdose with an
unprecedented level of mortality (Global Commission on Drug Policy, 2017). Opioids
are a drug category that contains both illegal and prescription drugs and their
main effect is to relieve pain, but when taken in excess, they also produce
euphoric side effects. Opioid use can lead to addiction, even when used
properly used as prescribed by a doctor, which leads to an increase in opioid
related overdoses and deaths. They are typically prescribed for pain reduction
for people with chronic pain such as long-term pain management and physical
rehabilitation (Volkow, 2015).  

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In 2014, 249 million prescriptions for
opioids were written in the United States, 1.9 million people using opioids
were dependent on them or were abusing the drugs, and 25% of people using them
long term, and not for cancer associated prescribing, had an opioid use
disorder (Prescription Opioid Overdose Data, Center for Disease Control).
Unfortunately, this public health epidemic has become so catastrophic because
prescription painkillers are more addictive than doctors originally thought
(Nordqvist, 2013).

Over
20,000 people in the United States have died each year from prescription drugs
and since the 1990s and prescription drug overdoses in the United States have
tripled. Prescription painkillers are highly addictive and this factor has lead
to many unintentional prescription drug overdoses (Nordqvist, 2013).
 Prescription opioid overdose is the leading cause of accidental death for
Americans under the age of 50 and the prevalence of opioid use on children as
young as 12 years old is rising. In addition to college aged students who continue
to be on the leading end of this epidemic.

 

In addition to opioids, college
students often use stimulants to increase performance, focus, and to stay awake
for extended periods of time. Stimulants
are of particular concern among college students due to rising rates of misuse.
The prescription drug Adderall was the most frequently misused prescription
drug of any type among college students in 2012, reported by 9.0 percent of
college students (Johnston, O’Malley, Bachman, & Schulenberg, 2013). Many students
purchased those substances from other students illegally and used them without
proper assessment and approval from a physician, which leads to many accidental
hospital visits. The number of ER visits involving ADHD stimulant medications
has increased dramatically in the past decade, from 2,131 ER visits in 2005 to
8,148 visits in 2010 among persons aged 18–25 (Substance Abuse and Mental
Health Services Administration, Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and
Quality, 2013).

Often,
the misuse of stimulants is often fueled by a perception that these drugs can
help with academic success via increased alertness, concentration, memory, and
cognition (Arria & DuPont, 2010). Which signals to the importance of
implementing an effective intervention that can help students make informed
decisions about drugs, learn the potential side effects, discover not to
underestimate the dangerous effects of mixing drugs, and change the student’s
self-efficacy and beliefs surrounding drug use.

 

 

Program goals (1 page)

The
goal of this intervention, titled “Saluki’s Say STOP or S3” is to reduce
opioid and stimulant misuse and overdose on the Southern Illinois University,
Carbondale campus and eventually, a national campaign implemented nationally at
every college and university.

S.M.A.R.T. Goals

In
order to decrease opioid misuse and the perceived benefits in SIU students we
will educate students, provide social support, present amnesty for addicts, and
enforce required training for campus leadership in order to increase opioid
awareness by 83%. All students will receive knowledge and exposure to this
intervention and these objectives will be measured by survey and dispatched
over a 5-year period from Spring 2017 to spring 2022.

Goal
1: Reduce 50% of prescription opioid misuse in college student by implementing
an educational course for 99% of freshman students by 2018

1.1  Educate freshman students on the effects
of drugs, substance abuse, and addiction in mandatory classes like freshman
seminar and health

 

1.2 Provide medical
amnesty for students who choose to seek help on campus in the health center

 

Goal
2: Reduce perceived benefits for 80% of current college opioid users by
implementing a flyer campaign between 2018 and 2022

2.1 Implement a
flyer campaign to educate students on the risks of drug usage and overdose
statistics.

 

Goal
3: Increase self-efficacy in 70% of students responding appropriately to
friends in an opioid crisis across the SIU, Carbondale campus.

3.1 Implement
alternative social meetings (i.e. support groups on campus) and train student
peer counselors to become peer-mentors.

 

3.2 Enforce
mandatory training for resident assistants, coaches, athletes, campus life
coordinators, and members of sororities and fraternities on the signs and
symptoms of common opioid abusers.

 

 

Intervention
Explanation (1-3 Pages)

 

The
critical goal of this intervention is to reduce prescription opioid misuse in
college students and reduce their perceived benefits about drug use. This
intervention is supported by many public health campaigns implemented at
various schools nationwide. One specific example is having first-year students
attend a mandatory life skills course, which is one of the main goals of this
intervention, is at the University of Rhode Island. All first-year students must
take URI 101: Traditions and Transformations, a one-credit freshman seminar
designed to help students navigate their first year in a new setting (Ross
& Dejong, 2008). It also utilizes the student’s current interests (e.g.,
athletics, fraternities) and is designed for specific majors. Implementation of
this program increased student knowledge about drug use and potential
consequences.

 

The
second goal is to provide medical amnesty for students who choose to seek help
on campus in the health center. A similar intervention, which also utilized the
health belief model, was implemented at Cornell University and focused on
enacting their Medical Amnesty Policies (MAP) and increasing awareness among
their students (Lewis & Marchell,
2006). This strategy increased the likelihood that a student would alert
the proper authorities in the event of a medical emergency because they knew
that they would not face disciplinary ramifications.

 

To
implement the remainder of the goals, the “Saluki’s Say STOP or S3”
program will focus on two Health Belief constructs (1) self-efficacy (2)
perceived beliefs and a minimal amount of cues to action (Glantz, Rimer,
Viswanath & Orleans, 2008). To reduce perceived benefits for current
college students, SIU will implement a full-scale media campaign including
print, school radio, and Instagram sponsored ads, to increase visualization among
students. The flyers (cues to action/ tactic to decrease perceived benefits)
will be focused on correcting perceived societal norms, statistics on SIU drug
use, national overdose and addiction rates, and medical amnesty.

 

Next,
the objective will be to increase self-efficacy in students responding
appropriately to friends in an opioid crisis by implement alternative social
meetings (i.e. support groups on campus) and training student peer counselors
to become peer-mentors.  Each university
organization has to host on-campus programs in order to remain listed as an
official program within the student government association. With this in mind,
each organization will be required to host one program about drugs, with a
specific topic of their choosing.

 

Lastly,
there will mandatory training for resident assistants, coaches, athletes,
campus life coordinators, and members of sororities and fraternities on the
signs and symptoms of common opioid abusers. This will improve self-efficacy
within the student and faculty populations. Additionally, each student will be
required to take a computerized test about the risks associated of drugs. This
course will be enforced in conjunction with the registrar’s office. If the
student does not complete the mandated training, they will not be allowed to
register for classes in the upcoming semester.

 

 

Evaluation Plan (1-2 Pages)

The
evaluation tool used to capture data within this action plan will be a survey.
Each survey will have a number listed, which will be used to track responses
for each individual class, while still maintaining anonymity. This will enable tracing
of the responses and measurement of the effectiveness of the intervention.

 

This
will occur by assessing responses acquired prior to the implementation of the
intervention and again following the conclusion of the study. This approach
allows us to assess the overall responses and look at trends within the student
population.

This also allows
us to see, based upon the incoming freshman responses, if each class has places
a greater emphasis on one construct or the other, leading to the development of
new and updated strategies specifically suited for the growing needs of the
student population.

 

At
the end of every semester, the survey will be distributed alongside each class
evaluation survey (which is already being administered by the university). This
is optimal because it utilizes the removal of an authority figure, increases
the student’s anonymity because it is completed within a large group, and is
peer distributed. For students who are first semester freshman, the survey will
be disseminated within mandatory freshman seminar classes, at the beginning of
the semester. This approach will capture the data surrounding their current
beliefs prior to the interventions and the school climate potentially affects
their beliefs.

 

Limitations

One
major limitation of this study will be the fact that self-reporting will be
utilized. This has the potential to be a major constraint because participants
are less likely to be honest about measures relating to drug use, perceived stigma,
and disciplinary ramifications. Also, while reading studies, participants may
vary in their understanding and interpretation of the data leading to incorrect
responses.

 

One
potential barrier will be student suffering from addiction talking honestly to
students and staff. This will probably be due to possible stigma associated
with drug use and the potential for disciplinary action, despite reiterating
that these things will not occur. Another major limitation of this study is the
potential bias of faculty members and other student leaders who observe
students and incorrectly accuse students who are perceived as “at-risk” as
potential drug users and overlook stellar students and falsely think that they
do not fit the prototypic model of a drug user and dismiss their claims. Ultimately,
an effective drug reduction strategy implemented correctly on a campus can have
a great shift in the social norms at the university, reduce the undesired
behavior of opioid abuse, scan shift negative ideas during this critical period
of development, and determine
the future trajectory of promising young lives.