How does the Village feel about using Harm reduction techniques when dealing with a person in addiction?


#1

I recently went to a training on harm reduction which instead of abstinence is around helping someone manage to reduce but not necessarily quit.


#2

From a medical perspective harm reduction decreases risk of death, disease and high risk behaviours. I would consider the close relation to enabling behavior when helping family. Can harm reduction be done by community support or another third party?


#3

My concern is that we are kicking the can down the road. In terms of quality of life, inter-personal relationships and contributing to society; harm reduction is not the answer sadly. It will help people (not guarantee) stay alive, and there is certainly some benefit in that … but we are signing-off on enabling the behaviour when we are a part of this. If it’s a means to an end as part of a plan to stabilize and firm boundaries are set around moving from harm reduction to detox, to abstinence, I can see some value (but it’s a tough way to get there). As family members and loved ones; we really want to see the return of the person we love and harm reduction isn’t the answer to that unfortunately. I should add, only based on the outcomes I have witnessed with those in long term harm-reduction programs. Open to hearing from someone with a success story!


#4

Harm reduction can be a fantastic and life-saving approach for many people, especially those with opioid use disorder. Like Sextherapyrn mentioned, from a medical perspective it reduces risk of death, disease and use of illicit/prescription drugs.

In terms of a success story, best example I’ve come across so far is that of David Poses who wrote a great article on the LA times:


#5

Thanks so much for sharing this @ollie - I agree :slight_smile: harm reduction is a great way to begin to face addiction.