Use of harm reduction strategies in an occupational therapy life skills intervention
Hellman, Miranda Renee
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Objectives of Study: Harm reduction intervention strategies have the potential to support positive health outcomes. However, no studies have explored how these strategies can be implemented in an occupational therapy intervention. This study addresses this knowledge gap by examining harm reduction strategies that were discussed during group and individual sessions of an occupational therapist-led life skills intervention for people who have a mental illness and are or were homeless. Methods: This study is a secondary analysis of a larger study that used a longitudinal repeated measures design to implement a life skills intervention. This secondary analysis uses a mixed methods design. Qualitative methods were used for data collection and initial analysis. Quantitative methods were then used to analyze differences between settings. Results: Three major themes emerged from the data: Financial, Physical, and Psychosocial Hann Reduction. The most prevalent theme was Financial Harm Reduction. All three themes were present throughout all of the different life skills intervention modules. There was no significant difference in the themes used between settings. Limitations and Recommendations for Further Research: This study was limited to what was documented in the therapy notes. Although the notes may not include every discussion that occurred, these results suggest that harm-reduction strategies can be utilized in an occupational therapy intervention. Additional research is needed to investigate how harm reduction can be implemented in other areas of occupational therapy practice.
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