The COVID-19 pandemic coinciding with the ongoing opioid crisis has led to an increase in deaths due to opioid poisoning. However, we are also seeing innovative models being developed that help to address the crisis by increasing rapid access to substance use services and supports.
The Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction (CCSA) has released the technical report, Rapid Access Models for Substance Use Services, and its companion report at a glance. CCSA commissioned a rapid review of the published literature to examine what factors increase access to and engagement with substance use treatment services, and the extent to which these factors have improved access to the services.
The review identified five models of rapid access for substance use services and supports:
- Hospital-affiliated models
- Mobile or assertive outreach models
- Screening, assessment, brief intervention and referral to treatment models
- Integrated youth services models
- Centralized and coordinated access models
Common features of these models include flexibility, outreach, multi-disciplinary teams, co-design with target populations, tailoring to the needs of specific populations, support for service transitions, and integration of evidence-based practices and evaluation.