Conducting Rapid Street Assessment of Drug Users in New York City Using Oral Fluid and Brief Interviews: A Feasibility Study

J Addict Dis. 2015;34(2-3):185-97. doi: 10.1080/10550887.2015.1059118.


This study piloted the feasibility of rapidly collecting both self-reports of drug use and saliva specimens for drug toxicology in field settings. The use of oral fluid collection devices to supplement self-reports is unproven in street settings and may pose challenges for field research. Sixty adults who identified as recent illicit drug users were recruited in public settings in New York City and were asked to complete a brief drug screening inventory and provided saliva specimens. Descriptive findings are detailed along with critical best research practices and limitations that provide important directions for researchers looking to employ both toxicology and self-report in rapid field recruitment designs.

Keywords: Drug abuse screening; oral fluid; rapid assessment; saliva; street drug users; toxicology.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mass Screening / methods*
  • Middle Aged
  • New York City / epidemiology
  • Pilot Projects
  • Saliva / chemistry*
  • Self Report
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Substance-Related Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Young Adult