Treating Comorbid Substance Use and Traumatic Stress among Male Prisoners: A Pilot Study of the Acceptability, Feasibility, and Preliminary Efficacy of Seeking Safety

Emma Louise Barrett*, Devon Indig, Sandra Sunjic, Claudia Sannibale, Natasha Sindicich, Julia Rosenfeld, Lisa M. Najavits, Katherine Mills

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Co-occurring substance use disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder is prevalent among prisoners, however there are few evidence-based treatment options available for this population. This pilot study investigated the acceptability, feasibility and preliminary efficacy of implementing partial-dose (eight-session) Seeking Safety among 30 Australian male prisoners. Findings demonstrate that Seeking Safety is desirable, acceptable, and feasible among male prisoners with a history of substance use and trauma. In addition, the study indicated promising results for substance use and mental health outcomes, which is particularly notable given the overall severity of the sample. The study also had significant Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander representation. A full scale trial of this intervention is required to further evaluate efficacy and inform practice to improve the mental health of this vulnerable population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-55
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Forensic Mental Health
Volume14
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • criminal justice
  • PTSD
  • Seeking Safety
  • substance use
  • trauma

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