Back in June I released the NSP Outcomes Tool This was an attempt to make a simple to use but flexible assessment/review tool that could be used in the relatively short time that most needle transactions happen in. Because of the need to make it so simple it unfortunately didn’t include anything around the use of steroids and other performance/image enhancing drugs (PIEDs). So now I’ve designed a NSP tool specifically for use with PIED users.
PIED/Steroid use has been on the rise in the UK for a few years now. Each year at the annual meetings of the National Needle Exchange Forum we get reports from around the UK and in some cases PIED use accounts for more than 50% of NSP visits. This is why back in 2010 I released the first ‘Steroid assessment’ which provides a very detailed look at someones use, but can take quite a while to use fully.
This new tool is has been written with the same formatting as the NSP tool to be easy and intuitive to use, but still be robust enough to enable workers to have in-depth conversations and keep track of outcomes and work done with people who use performance and image enhancing drugs.
The tool itself is a single page based on a mind-map. This includes areas of discussion around the main topics for working with people who use (steroids, injecting injury, BBV etc) as well as other topics that are often discussed in NSP but that workers rarely ever document (education, housing, employment). Recording of these discussions and related outcomes are increasingly important when it comes to talking to commissioners and maintaining funding.
Like the NSP tool this records both the risk factors and the protective factors, resulting in a ‘score’ that can be tracked.
As with all downloads on the site this has extensive worker notes that explain the whole process. I’ve also included a detailed example of how to ‘score’ the sheet and a tracking tool to monitor each individuals scores. Within the notes are some tips on the kinds of advice to give, although I would encourage any service seeing a significant number of PIED users to make sure that their staff have sufficient training to work with this group.
If you decide to use this tool, or the other companion outcomes form then I’d really love to know what you think of it.
I’d like to thank Bournmouth DAAT who kindly sponsored the creation of this tool
Nigel Brunsdon is the owner of Injecting Advice. He’s been working in harm reduction since the 1990’s, previously a frontline needle programme worker he now splits his time between photography and developing online resources for drugs workers and users.