The Contribution of Online Social Networks for Drug Abuse Treatment Referral: a Pilot Study

DOI: https://doi.org/10.29086/JISfTeH.7.e4

  • Diogo Barbosa Telehealth Laboratory, Rio de Janeiro State University https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8816-1770
  • Luciana Tricai Cavalini Telehealth Laboratory, Rio de Janeiro State University, and Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics of the Collective Health Institute at Federal Fluminense University, Niterói/RJ https://orcid.org/0000-0002-1087-1024
  • Nádia Cristina Pinheiro Rodrigues National School of Public Health Sérgio Arouca at Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, Rio de Janeiro/RJ and Telehealth Laboratory, Rio de Janeiro State University, Rio de Janeiro/RJ http://orcid.org/0000-0002-2613-5283
Keywords: telemedicine, psychoactive substance dependence, social networks, mental health, mental health services, Brazil

Abstract

Background: The consumption of psychoactive drugs is growing in Brazil, as well as the access of social networks. This study is a preliminary short report about the contribution of online social networks for drug abuse treatment. The study aimed to evaluate the role of an online social network to engage psychoactive drug users in treatment. Methods: A descriptive study was undertaken from July to September 2015. The study population were psychoactive drugs users who accessed voluntarily the webpage “Stay Free of Drugs” (SFD) from the social network Facebook. Results: A total of 25 psychoactive drug users were enrolled in the study, and 16 (64%) accessed a healthcare centre seeking treatment. The average from the users’ online contact to their visit to the healthcare centre was 8.4 days. Half of the participants were exclusive alcohol users and accessed the webpage at night (65%). Conclusions: The use of a social network showed a potential importance in referring drug users to treatment, also acting as health education strategy.

Author Biographies

Diogo Barbosa, Telehealth Laboratory, Rio de Janeiro State University

 

 

 

Luciana Tricai Cavalini, Telehealth Laboratory, Rio de Janeiro State University, and Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics of the Collective Health Institute at Federal Fluminense University, Niterói/RJ

 

 

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Published
2019-01-25
How to Cite
Barbosa, D., Cavalini, L., & Rodrigues, N. C. (2019). The Contribution of Online Social Networks for Drug Abuse Treatment Referral: a Pilot Study. Journal of the International Society for Telemedicine and EHealth, 7, e4 (1-3). https://doi.org/10.29086/JISfTeH.7.e4
Section
Special Theme: Women in eHealth