“Can we get a Black rehabilitation center”? Factors impacting the treatment experiences of Black people who use opioids

Candice N. Hargons, Brittany D. Miller-Roenigk, Natalie J. Malone, Destin L. Mizelle, Jovonna D. Atkinson, Danelle J. Stevens-Watkins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Introduction: With opioid overdose rates doubling in the state of Kentucky over the last year, the opioid crisis is having a deadly impact on the state. Among Black individuals in particular, overdose rates have increased by nearly a third. As such, we must examine ways to effectively intervene to reduce deaths among this underrepresented population. Method: The current study utilized a thematic analysis to examine factors influencing treatment perceptions and experiences among a sample of 39 Black adults with a recent history of opioid use. Results: The primary themes highlighted in the study included “autonomous accessibility,” “provider characteristics,” and “relational support,” which are aligned with Self-Determination Theory. Conclusions: We discuss how these themes relate to treatment initiation, engagement, and completion and discuss implications of this research in treatment for Black adults. Specifically, we discuss treatment considerations among Black adults who use prescription opioids such as ensuring autonomy and a collaborative approach to treatment, especially in mandated treatment, with strategies such as motivational interviewing. Further, we discuss the importance of nonjudgmental providers, gauging client preferences for racially, ethnically, and gender matched providers; and we assess support networks among clients and how these networks can be integrated or utilized in treatment planning.

Original languageEnglish
Article number108805
JournalJournal of Substance Abuse Treatment
StatePublished - Nov 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier Inc.


  • Black adults
  • Prescription opioids
  • Treatment experiences
  • Treatment perceptions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatric Mental Health
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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