The PROFAN 2.0 provincial training program offered by Méta d’Âme (Peer Association for People Who Use or Have Used Opioids) and the Association des Intervenants en Dépendance du Québec (AIDQ) is part of the 2018–2020 national strategy to prevent opioid overdoses and respond to them, aimed at empowering everyone to take action to prevent and reduce opioid overdoses. In July 2018, the two partner organizations were mandated by the Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux du Québec (MSSS) to develop content complementary to the existing PROFAN training, created by Méta d’Âme, which trained more than 815 people on the Island of Montreal from 2015 to 2018.
The half-day training for users, their families and friends, which was designed to enable participants to recognize opioid overdose situations and use a naloxone kit, was enhanced to meet the needs of the community sector. In addition to the elements of the initial training, including the prevention of overdose, post- intervention and prescription opioids are now covered in a training course designed for people working in community settings. This led to the creation of Coping with Opioid Overdoses, an innovative training program to prevent opioid overdoses and reduce related deaths, delivered by both peers and experienced practitioners.
“The training courses developed and co-facilitated by the AIDQ and Méta d’Âme are intended for anyone working with people likely to be affected by an opioid overdose situation, or for users, their families and friends. They are focused on concrete and current content, specifically targeted and structured to adapt to the needs of each environment where they are offered, in collaboration with the existing stakeholder(s).”
– Sandhia Vadlamudy, Executive Director of the AIDQ
Méta d’Âme and the AIDQ worked on the development of the PROFAN 2.0 program in association with a research committee, working committees and an advisory committee. Individual and group meetings, surveys, as well as trial runs of the training have been conducted with community groups, user groups and partners. Focus groups and a participant evaluation were also conducted by Michel Perreault’s team at the Douglas Research Centre.
“In Quebec, 530 lives could have been lost between January 2019 and March 2020 due to opioid use or Other drugs1. The pooling of our expertise makes it possible to provide tools, strategies and practices to be implemented by the participants in training courses with the aim of preventing overdoses and of saving lives.”
– Chantale Perron, PROFAN 2.0 Project Manager at Méta d’Âme
The Coping with Opioid Overdoses training courses presented as part of the PROFAN 2.0 program was offered from October 2018 to March 2020 to 1,144 people across Quebec.