Information Needs of Addicted Individuals: A Qualitative Case Study

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Health Information Management, School of Health Management and Information Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

2 Medical Informatics Research Center, Institute for Futures Studies in Health, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran


Background: The purpose of this study was to investigate the information needs of addicts from the perspective of addicts. By identifying the experiences of the individuals involved in addiction and assessing the information they need, targeted educational interventions can be provided to meet their needs.
Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 13 addicts in two addiction outpatient clinics. Data were analyzed using the qualitative content analysis approach proposed by Graneheim and Lundman.
Findings: The information needs of the interviewees included recognizing types of addictive substances and the degree of dependence on them, awareness of the physical and psychological symptoms of addiction to various addictive substances, awareness of various pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments, physical and psychological symptoms of quitting addiction, awareness of the length of treatment, knowledge about the dose and degree of dependence on drugs, recognizing the causes of failure in quitting addiction, awareness of governmental and non-governmental services, and awareness of the psychological measures and care services necessary after quitting addiction.
Conclusion: The results of the study showed that the knowledge and awareness of addicted individuals in various fields of addiction is low and it is necessary to provide education based on the information needs of these individuals. This requires the cooperation and efforts of policy makers, the Ministry of Education, welfare managers, and specialists in camps and addiction treatment centers. Specialists in addiction treatment clinics can use the information needs of addicts determined in this study to enrich the education of addicts.