Home > Maze and minefield: a grounded theory of opiate self-detoxification in rural Ireland

McDonnell, Anne and Van Hout, Marie Claire (2010) Maze and minefield: a grounded theory of opiate self-detoxification in rural Ireland. Drugs and Alcohol Today, 10, (2), pp. 24-31. https://doi.org/10.5042/daat.2010.0254.

Opiate use is no longer confined to the greater urban context in Ireland, with scant detoxification services present in rural areas (Carew et al, 2009; National Advisory Committee on Drugs, 2008). This exploratory research aimed to yield an illustrative account of opiate users' experiences of self-detoxification by adopting a grounded theory approach (Glaser & Strauss, 1967). Data emerging from 21 in-depth interviews (n=12 heroin users, n=9 drug service providers: statutory, community and voluntary) were analysed using the constant comparative method. The study generated a substantive theory of self-detoxification as a subjective process of seeking heroin abstinence. Self-detoxification emerged as a frequent and reactive or proactive process in collaboration with others (heroin users, family and drug service providers). The study has implications for drug service delivery in rural Ireland in terms of increasing information provision and access to opiate detoxification through the development of low threshold services and community-based detoxification.

Item Type
Publication Type
Irish-related, Article
Drug Type
June 2010
Identification #
Page Range
pp. 24-31
Accession Number
HRB (Not in collection)
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