A Fast Track Open Access article published in the Health Behavior and Policy Review Journal.
Joshua Wilke, MD
Cahit Kaya, PhD
Wajiha Z. Akhtar, PhD
William Bull, MD
Sarah Krechel, MPH
Randall Brown, MD, PhD
Ryan P. Westergaard, MD, PhD, MPH
David W. Seal, PhD
People who inject drugs (PWIDs) often face stigma, leading to barriers in accessing healthcare and may contribute to negative health outcomes. The objective of this study was to understand and describe the manifestations of stigma toward PWIDs and their impact on the utilization of essential prevention services.
We interviewed 44 persons knowledgeable about PWIDs’ healthcare needs. Interviews explored perceptions of the community, healthcare service providers, law enforcement attitudes toward PWIDs, and treatment services.
Respondents believed that the community generally has stigmatizing attitudes towards PWIDs; treatment program personnel and healthcare providers have less stigmatized attitudes but could benefit from more education and training on drug use and addiction.
Education and training on stigma and its negative impact on the lives of PWIDs for K-12 students and for healthcare professionals (eg, treatment options, harm reduction strategies) might mitigate stigma toward PWIDs and improve access to services and outcomes.
An Open Access article published in the Health Behavior and Policy Review Journal.
The full article is available as a PDF download.
Sarah E. Raskin, PhD, MPH
In this study, I describe parents’ experiences with a rural school-based dental sealant project (SBSP), a Healthy People 2020 objective for optimizing population-level protection against dental decay and reducing oral health disparities.
I conducted parent interviews (N = 16) and coded them with NVivo 10, using deductive and inductive codes, from which I identified themes.
Parents enrolled children in the SBSP based on their confidence in local public institutions and the project’s convenience and accessibility. Parents did not understand the prevention orientation of the project, what services were offered or delivered, service limitations, or next steps, in particular their need to complete referrals to dentists. Parents’ recommendations for program improvement included strengthening communications and reviving a defunct dental public health mobile unit that had previously treated children’s existing dental problems.
SBSPs should proactively identify and address family and contextual factors when planning and implementing projects. SBSPs should also strengthen case management capacity, collaborate with schools to bolster communications and message clarification, and be relieved of administrative and duplicate travel burdens that impede team members’ capacity to fulfill technical and case management-oriented duties, namely support the transition and maintenance of children into dental homes.