This section includes patient stories as well as links and resources that shed light on the experiences of individuals, families and communities with lived experience of opioid use and opioid use disorder. Its inclusion is meant to underscore the critical importance of these experiences and the role of patient advocacy to inform the development of opioid policy and program development, education and practice.
This section of the website was created to honour all those with lived experiences. It serves to highlight one key learning that came to light during the course of this project; that being, the incredible value of lived experience perspectives to nurses, pharmacists, social workers, students, public health practitioners and other health care professionals for fostering a deeper understanding of the unique strengths and challenges faced by individuals, families and communities with lived experience of opioid use and opioid use disorder.
Over the last few decades, patient advocates and those with lived experience have begun to play an increasingly important role in the development and delivery of programs, interventions, and services designed to meet their needs. “Nothing about us, without us”, an expression popularized by the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network (2005) punctuated this movement in highlighting the fundamental significance of this shift.
Recognizing this, CASN, AFPC, and CASWE-ACFTS acknowledge the critical importance of respecting and actively listening to the lived experiences shared in addition to entry-level health care and social service providers having access to national, consensus-informed syntheses of the latest evidence-informed solutions, approaches, guidelines and resources in this area. We extend special thanks to the multiple stakeholders, including patient advocates and persons with lived experiences across Canada who provided their feedback to inform the development of this resource and the Interprofessional Education Guidelines on Opioid Use and Opioid Use Disorder. We are particularly grateful to the patient advocates and persons with lived experience of opioid use and opioid use disorder who offered their time and expertise.
As this is a living resource, the three partnering organizations recognize that content reflected here may require updating as new evidence emerges.