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NIDA. (1995, August 1). NIDA Releases Three New Videos for Practicioners. Retrieved from

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August 01, 1995
Robert Mathias

Drug abuse treatment programs that work with men and women in prison, community approaches that reduce the spread of AIDS among injecting drug users, and procedures for using a new opiate treatment medication called LAAM (l-alpha-acetyl-methadol) are the subjects of three new videos that NIDA has produced for drug abuse counselors. The three videos are the latest in a series of information-dissemination videos that NIDA has created to dramatize recent findings about approaches and techniques that have been shown to be effective in preventing and treating drug abuse and AIDS.

NIDA produced the videos under the Institute's research dissemination and application program, which was initiated in 1991. This program seeks to improve prevention and treatment by making new research findings available quickly to practitioners in the drug abuse field. In addition to videotapes, the program uses other methods to disseminate information, such as clinical reports and regional workshops. The three new videos are described below.

"Drug Abuse Treatment in Prison"

Portrays two comprehensive drug abuse treatment approaches that have been effective with male and female prisoners. In the video, clients and counselors in a therapeutic community for male inmates in the Delaware prison system discuss the need to separate the treatment program from the rest of the prison community; the benefits of using ex-addicts as counselors; the importance of providing ancillary services, such as education and vocational training; and the need for transitional support services to help former inmates cope with life outside of prison. In portraying a biopsychosocial drug treatment program for female inmates in the Federal prison at Lexington, Kentucky, the video shows how the comprehensive program meets the needs of women in recovery. Inmates are shown in group sessions that illustrate some of the program's components, such as cognitive skills therapy, social skills training, and relapse prevention therapy. (See related article, "Correctional Treatment Helps Offenders Stay Drug and Arrest Free")

"Drug Abuse and HIV: Reaching Those at Risk"

Provides an overview of three intervention models that have helped injecting drug users (IDUs) reduce their risks of contracting AIDS. The video shows how these intervention programs educate out-of-treatment IDUs about AIDS, about the behaviors that may increase their risk of contracting the disease, and about risk reduction strategies. In depicting the indigenous leader outreach program, the video shows how staff workers go into the streets to socialize with community members, form alliances with key individuals who have influence with IDUs, and gain access to social networks that are linked to injecting drug users. Through these groups, the workers disseminate information about HIV and risk reduction methods to IDUs. In the standard NIDA intervention program, clients receive two core counseling and education sessions. These sessions encourage drug users to seek confidential screening for HIV, provide basic information about AIDS, demonstrate ways patients can change their behavior to reduce their risks of contracting HIV, and explain the implications of a positive HIV test. Finally, the AIDS risk-reduction intervention model combines some of the aggressive outreach aspects of the indigenous leader model and the structured individual counseling components of the standard intervention model.

"LAAM: Another Option for Maintenance Treatment of Opiate Addiction"

Shows how LAAM, a new opiate agonist similar to methadone, can be used to treat opiate addiction. It stresses that LAAM is intended to provide practitioners with another treatment tool, not to replace methadone. In the video, patients and clinicians explain that because LAAM has a longer-lasting treatment effect, LAAM-maintained addicts require fewer visits to the clinic than methadone-maintained patients do. Some patients also report experiencing fewer side effects, such as sedation and withdrawal symptoms, and feeling more "normal" on LAAM than they do on methadone. In the video, clinicians explain that having both LAAM and methadone available gives them greater flexibility in meeting the treatment needs of individual patients. The video also shows treatment experts answering practical questions that clinics may have about using LAAM, such as: What are the potential problems in transferring clients from methadone to LAAM? Should patients take a higher dose of LAAM than methadone? And what is the procedure for obtaining approval to dispense LAAM?

For information on how to order these and other NIDA research dissemination and application videos see article on NIDA's RDA Videos.