Mechanisms and context in the San Patrignano drug recovery community, Italy: a qualitative study to inform transfer to Scotland

Devlin, A. M. and Wight, D. (2021) Mechanisms and context in the San Patrignano drug recovery community, Italy: a qualitative study to inform transfer to Scotland. Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, 28(1), pp. 85-96. (doi: 10.1080/09687637.2020.1747397) (PMID:34824492) (PMCID:PMC7612027)

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The San Patrignano drug recovery community, Italy, is regarded as one of the most successful in the world. However, if this model is to be transferred to other countries, it is necessary to clarify its underlying mechanisms and how far their success is context dependent. This qualitative study investigated these features of the San Patrignano model. Data collection included semi-structured interviews with six key stakeholders and 10 days’ observational field notes. Data were synthesised using frameworks and analysis was informed by realist principles. Individual level mechanisms include: commitment to change, removal from former social environment, communal living, peer mentor with lived experience and meaningful work. These operate in the context of a free of charge, long term (3–4 year) residential community. Organisational level mechanisms are: visionary leadership, staff dedication, social enterprise and adaptable learning. Organisational contextual factors include: a gap in suitable provision for drug recovery and the region’s high level of social capital. Articulating the programme theory of the recovery model and its contextual dependency helps clarify which elements should be transferred and how far they need to be adapted for different socio-cultural settings. The recognition of context is crucial when considering transfer of effective complex interventions across countries.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Wight, Professor Danny and Devlin, Dr Alison
Authors: Devlin, A. M., and Wight, D.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy
Publisher:Taylor and Francis
ISSN (Online):1465-3370
Published Online:21 April 2020
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2020 The Author(s)
First Published:First published in Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy 28(1): 85-96
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons license

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
727661SPHSU Core Renewal: Complexity in Health Improvement Research ProgrammeLaurence MooreMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12017/14IHW - MRC/CSO SPHU