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Client and Provider Views on Access to Care for Substance-Using American Indians: Perspectives from a Northern Plains Urban Clinic.

American Indian and Alaska Native Mental Health Research 2014;21(2):43-65. [doi: 10.5820/aian.2101.2014.43]

Frankie B. Kropp, MS (University of Cincinnati, OV Node), Maurine Lilleskov, PhD, MPH (Xcel Research Consulting), Jennifer Richards, MPH (Johns Hopkins University), Eugene C. Somoza, MD, PhD (University of Cincinnati, OV Node), CTN-0033-Ot-4 Team.

To address the need for additional data regarding alcohol and drug use in American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) communities, the National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network (CTN) funded several projects that developed collaborative research partnerships with AI/AN communities. As part of this larger project, researchers in the CTN's Ohio Valley Node investigated substance use patterns and associated issues for American Indian substance use treatment clients at an urban, non-Native program in the Northern Plains (CTN-0033-Ot-4).

One aim of the overall project was to gain the perspectives of American Indians seeking treatment for methamphetamine and other substance use on issues related to treatment and the personal impact of use. This aim was met in two ways: first, by summarizing intake data from the participating clinic, and second, by conducting focus groups with American Indians in treatment to gain perspectives from 152 clients (65% male, 35% female; mean age 30 years). Another aim of the overall project was to gain the perspectives of urban treatment providers on issues of concern in providing treatment services for methamphetamine and other substance use with AIs; this aim was accomplished by conducting a focus group with treatment providers.

Conclusions: Resource-related barriers were prominently mentioned by the focus groups and questionnaire, particularly logistical issues associated with accessing care in this geographically dispersed region. Recommendations from the focus groups involved increasing resources for urban American Indians and addressing cultural gaps. Findings presented here will help fill the knowledge gap around barriers to treatment for urban American Indian substance users, better informing decisions in urban treatment programs about potential methods to increase access to care for this population and helping to maximize existing resources. (Article (Peer-Reviewed), PDF, English, 2014)

Keywords: Attitudes of health personnel | CTN platform/ancillary study | Minority groups | Methamphetamine | Native Americans | Prescription-type opiates | Stimulant abuse | American Indian and Alaska Native Mental Health Research (journal)

Document No: 1108, PMID: 25111843, PMCID: PMC4144438.

Submitted by Frankie B. Kropp, MS, OV Node.

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