Addictions Outreach Club

Campus: 
London
Type: 
Community Outreach

 

The Middlesex-London Health Unit estimates that drug-related deaths have recently overtaken motor vehicle collisions as the number one cause of death in London, and the number of active IV drug users per capita in London is one of the highest in Canada, second only to Vancouver. Training in this city, we will see the impacts of drug addiction in many contexts, including our emergency medicine and internal medicine rotations, and it’s important that we understand the causes of addiction and the best ways to help patients living with drug addiction.

Through presentations/films, workshops (e.g., naloxone kit training), and community outreach events, the club hopes to help increase medical student familiarity with these health issues and the lived experience of these patients, as well as reduce stigma of patients living with addiction in the greater London community.

Goals of this club:

1. AWARENESS/EDUCATION: To get medical students discussing and learning more about the complex biopsychosocial conditions of substance-related and addictive disorders, which are prevalent in Canada and still deeply affected by stigma[1]. This group is also hopes to bring attention to healthcare related to addictions treatment, as it is a constantly evolving and newly-developing field.

2. OUTREACH: To engage with recovery-oriented and harm reduction initiatives as they related to substance used disorder.

[1] According to the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), 1 in 10 Canadians over the age of 15 report symptoms consistent with alcohol or illicit drug dependence. (Statistics Canada. “Canadian Community Health Survey: Mental Health and Well-being”, 2003).