Week 6: Prevention and Social Change

Published by Brenda I. Belcher

Apr 4, 2021


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Week 6: Prevention and Social Change

Sam has been home from military service for 3 months. While in Afghanistan, he was the only survivor of an explosion during a mission. In the United States, his family and friends have been celebrating his return with parties and activities. He knows they are trying to cheer him up, but he feels more and more isolated and is in chronic pain from injuries sustained during the blast. He knows he should stick to the prescribed amount of pain medication, but finds that one extra pill here and there gives him the peaceful feeling he seeks. Only 26 years old, Sam knows that he will need to find a civilian job once his leave runs out, but he feels groggy and unmotivated.

What are the potential costs to Sam and society if his dependence on his medication becomes an addiction? From which type of prevention models and programs might he benefit?

This week, you analyze risk for addiction within a specific population and strategies for risk prevention. You also analyze community-based addiction prevention strategies and develop a recommendation to promote positive social change related to addictions.

Learning Objectives

Students will:
  • Analyze risk for addiction in a specific population
  • Analyze strategies for risk prevention
  • Evaluate efficacy of prevention program strategies
  • Develop a recommendation for positive social change related to addictions

Learning Resources

Note: To access this week’s required library resources, please click on the link to the Course Readings List, found in the Course Materials section of your Syllabus.

Required Readings

Miller, G. (2015). Learning the language of addiction counseling (4th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

  • Chapter 7, “Relapse Prevention”

Focus on counselor approaches, prevention models, techniques, and co-occurring disorders.Cheon, J. W. (2008). Best practices in community-based prevention for youth substance reduction: Towards strengths-based positive development policy. Journal of Community Psychology, 36(6), 761–779.

Focus on best practices for keeping youth from engaging in substance abuse.Wodarski, J. S. (2010). Prevention of adolescent reoccurring violence and alcohol abuse: A multiple site evaluation. Journal of Evidence-Based Social Work, 7(4), 280–301.

Focus on prevention strategies for adolescent violence and alcohol abuse.Yashinsky, E. (2007). Community-based addiction treatment. Journal of Jewish Communal Service, 82(1/2), 77–82

Focus on the client-centered treatment model that is based in ongoing support.

Optional Resources

Hill, L. G., Goates, S. G., & Rosenman, R. (2010). Detecting selection effects in community implementations of family-based substance abuse prevention programs. American Journal of Public Health, 100(4), 623–630.

Focus on implementing community-based programs.Schaeffer, C. M., Saldana, L., Rowland, M. D., Henggeler, S. W., & Swenson, C. C. (2008). New initiatives in improving youth and family outcomes by importing evidence-based practices. Journal of Child & Adolescent Substance Abuse, 17(3), 27–45.

Focus on the three community-based projects for substance abuse prevention and treatment.Valente, T. W., Chou, C. P., & Pentz, M. A. (2007). Community coalitions as a system: Effects of network change on adoption of evidence-based substance abuse prevention. American Journal of Public Health, 97(5), 880–886.

Focus on the role and function of community coalitions.

Discussion: Prevention Programs for Target Populations

Much of this course has focused on individuals who have addictions or are showing signs of becoming addicted. This week, you explore prevention strategies for an at-risk population. Some programs are focused on helping populations avoid trying a substance, and some are tailored to relapse prevention. How effective are these programs? The results are mixed. For some, these programs are helpful, but many individuals still struggle with addiction. Why might these programs not be effective? Experts in the addictions field cite different reasons. Many believe that some prevention programs do not address the risk to the population they are targeting. Therefore, addictions professionals typically consider these aspects of a population before creating a prevention program. For your Assignment this week, you will research the risks associated with the population of veterans of military service and examine the ramifications of these risks to their vulnerability to addiction.

To prepare for this Discussion:

  • Review the Learning Resources. Some of the Resources center on adolescents or other target populations. For this Discussion, focus on successful program features rather than target populations.
  • Consider a population of veterans of military service returning to their home countries. Research at least two articles on the psychological needs of returning veterans and two articles on the biopsychosocial model using credible online sources.

By Day 4

Post your response to the following:

Why might veterans of military service returning from combat be at risk for addiction? Use a biopsychosocial model to frame your responses. Include strategies for risk prevention.

By Day 6

Respond to at least one of your colleagues.

  • Include a different risk factor
  • Present a different model that might explain a risk factor(s)
  • Provide a different perspective on one aspect of a colleague’s post
  • Expand on a colleague’s post by providing a new insight

Evans, R. I. (2002). Just-say-no campaign. San Francisco, CA: Healthline. Retrieved from the Healthline website: http://www.healthline.com/galecontent/just-say-no-campaign

Submission and Grading Information

Grading Criteria

To access your rubric:Week 6 Discussion Rubric

Post by Day 4 and Respond by Day 6

To participate in this Discussion:Week 6 Discussion

Assignment: Addictions Programs

Addiction may cost individuals their relationships, jobs, and health. To society, the costs can be measured in many ways. Addictions have been linked to increases in violence and crime. Financially, the actual costs, which can be measured in health care and crime costs and lost productivity, are astronomical. In the United States alone, costs related to illicit drugs, alcohol, and tobacco exceeded $600 billion annually in the mid- to late 2000s (National Institute on Drug Abuse, 2011). Thus, every community has a program or needs a program to address addiction.

Should you choose to become an addictions professional, you may be able to make a difference in individuals’ lives. For this Assignment, select a community of your choice and research available addictions programs using credible online resources, a local library, and other sources.

By Day 7

Submit a 3- to 5-page paper that includes two sections:

Section One: Community-Based Prevention Programs

  • Briefly describe the community you selected, including demographics and geographic characteristics.
  • Describe three community-based addiction-prevention programs.
  • Describe prevention strategies used in each of the programs.
  • Explain which prevention program strategies might be most effective in each program.
  • Explain what elements might be missing from these prevention programs.

Section Two: Making a Difference

  • If you choose to work in the field of addictions, how might you contribute to positive social change within your community? Be specific and include examples based on what you have learned in this course.

National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2011). Drug facts: Understanding drug abuse and addiction. Bethesda, MD: NIDA. Retrieved from the NIDA website: http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/understanding-drug-abuse-addiction

Submission and Grading Information

To submit your completed Assignment for review and grading, do the following:

  • Please save your Assignment using the naming convention “WK6Assgn+last name+first initial.(extension)” as the name.
  • Click the Week 6 Assignment Rubric to review the Grading Criteria for the Assignment.
  • Click the Week 6 Assignment link. You will also be able to “View Rubric” for grading criteria from this area.
  • Next, from the Attach File area, click on the Browse My Computer button. Find the document you saved as “WK6Assgn+last name+first initial.(extension)” and click Open.
  • If applicable: From the Plagiarism Tools area, click the checkbox for I agree to submit my paper(s) to the Global Reference Database.
  • Click on the Submit button to complete your submission.
Grading Criteria

To access your rubric:Week 6 Assignment Rubric

Check Your Assignment Draft for Authenticity

To check your Assignment draft for authenticity:Submit your Week 6 Assignment draft and review the originality report.

Submit Your Assignment by Day 7

To submit your Assignment:Week 6 Assignment

Final Quiz

Quizzes are included to assess your knowledge of the course content. Be sure to read all of the chapters and resources assigned this week before taking this quiz.

By Day 7

Quizzes must be completed. No credit will be given for a Quiz if completed after the week in which it is due unless prior arrangements are made with the Instructor. Exceptions will be made only for those rare situations that legitimately prevent a student from completing on time.

If you encounter technical difficulties during the Quiz or if you have questions about how an online quiz works, consider contacting the Student Support Team for more information. (The contact information is in the Student Support area.)

Click on the Week 6 Final Quiz link to access the quiz.

Submission and Grading Information

Submit Your Quiz by Day 7

To submit your Quiz:Week 6 Final Quiz

Week in Review

In this final week you analyzed risk for addiction in a specific population and the strategies used for risk prevention. In addition, you evaluated efficacy of prevention program strategies and developed a recommendation for positive social change related to addictions.

After you have completed the assignments for this week, you have finished the course. Congratulations!

Please complete the Course Evaluation and submit by Day 7.


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