Your Name and Title: Lianne A. Urada, Associate Professor

Library, School, or Organization Name: San Diego State University School of Social Work and University of California San Diego Division of Infectious Diseases and Global Public Health

Co-Presenter Name(s): N/A

Area of the World from Which You Will Present: USA

Language in Which You Will Present: English

Target Audience(s): Librarians, college students, social workers, and those assisting persons experiencing homelessness and/or opioid use disorder

Short Session Description (one line):  Library-facilitated telehealth to increase treatment for patrons experiencing homelessness and opioid use disorder

Full Session Description

Accessing opioid use disorder (OUD) treatment is difficult for individuals who are homeless. This population often uses public libraries for computer and internet access, which could provide telehealth access to OUD treatment. Therefore, we developed a novel 12-week telehealth intervention called "Bupe by the Book" (BBB) that uses library resources to facilitate initiation and retention in OUD treatment with buprenorphine. We partnered with a federally qualified healthcare center (Father Joe’s Village Health Center) and the San Diego Public Library. Participants were eligible if they were unstably housed or homeless (e.g., living on the street or in shelters) AND they had to have used opioids in the past 3 months. Library patrons were recruited via flyers, screened for eligibility, and referred to a nearby treatment program for in-person intake. Those who attended intake were enrolled in the study and randomized to BBB (i.e., follow-up telehealth visits using library internet access) or treatment as usual (i.e., follow-up visits in person or by phone). Once screened by the medical provider, they were given a prescription for buprenorphine (a medication-assisted treatment for opioid use in the form of a take-home medication or monthly injection). As the research team, we followed up with the participants for 12 weeks. They came to the library to see us for an interview/survey, snacks, and a urinary drug screening self-test. If they were assigned to the telehealth group, they had the option to see the medical provider through telehealth from the library. Preliminary findings from our randomized control trial pilot shows that those using telehealth in the library were three times more likely to take the buprenorphine medication and to see the medical provider more than once, compared to the control group. Preliminary data suggest BBB is a feasible and acceptable strategy to leverage public library resources for telehealth to engage and retain unstably housed people with OUD in buprenorphine treatment.


Websites / URLs Associated with Your Session: n/a

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