Public servants and their perspectives of the fentanyl crisis in Wichita and Sedgwick County

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Stegman, Angela
Pierce, Rheanna
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Research Projects
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Stegman, Angela. 2023. Public servants and their perspectives of the fentanyl crisis in Wichita and Sedgwick County. -- In Proceedings: 19th Annual Symposium on Graduate Research and Scholarly Projects. Wichita, KS: Wichita State University

The purpose of this study is to explore public servants' perspectives of intervention(s) necessary to combat the fentanyl crisis. Fentanyl related overdoses, fatal and nonfatal, continue to rise in the United States. The 2021 annual report of Sedgwick County Forensic Science Center reports cases submitted with fentanyl detected rose from 4 in 2016 to 191 in 2021 for an increase of4,675%. A Qualtrics survey was distributed to 35 organizations that work within the community and have interactions with people who have been utilizing fentanyl. Some public servants who have had an interaction with interventions of fentanyl are; social workers, corrections and law enforcement, city and county, hospital and emergency room medical professionals, mental health provider staff/professionals, Department of Veteran's Affairs medical and mental health professionals, addictions and treatment provider professionals, and community advocates. In this exploratory qualitative study we will assess the public servants' perspectives of interventions, explore the perspective of the public servants' beliefs of how the community perceives their job at their attempt to prevent the fentanyl crisis and examine the zip codes of the helping professions participants to understand what District of Wichita they are speaking to specifically. Findings then will be categorized into themes of professionals, experience in the field, licensed held, race and a median age range of the participants per helping profession. This study hopes to inform public servants by providing more information on how different perspectives of public servants can impact or contradict one another so better education can be distributed. This study found that the most recognized intervention across public servants was to have a medically assisted treatment that can work with a multidisciplinary approach. With fentanyl overdoses continuing to rise, research should continue to explore how to create successful multidisciplinary team interventions within communities across Wichita and Sedgwick County.

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Presented to the 19th Annual Symposium on Graduate Research and Scholarly Projects (GRASP) held at the Rhatigan Student Center, Wichita State University, April 14, 2023.
Research completed in the Department of Social Work, Fairmount College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
Wichita State University
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v. 19
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