mindfulness, substance use disorders, traumatic brain injury



  1. Kristofersson, Gisli K. RN, PhD, PMHNP-BC
  2. Beckers, Tom LADC
  3. Krueger, Rick LADC, MS


Background: Of the 1.4 million Americans who sustain traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) each year up to half experience substance use disorders (SUDs). This often leads to various issues such as increased rates of mental health problems and delay or lack of return to full employment.


Aims: The purpose of this program evaluation was to describe Vinland National Center's (Vinland's) client and staff perceptions of a 4-week mindfulness-based intervention adapted from the original mindfulness-based stress reduction program for persons experiencing SUDs and TBIs. It focused on the possible relevance and applicability of mindfulness practice for this population.


Method: Four focus groups were conducted based on Krueger's methods in conducting focus groups: two with Vinland staff members and two focus groups with residents.


Results: The analysis of staff focus groups revealed general staff satisfactions with the intervention. A general consensus was that the mindfulness intervention fitted well with the needs of Vinland's clients and their current program. Client feedback further revealed general satisfaction with the mindfulness curriculum. No adverse effects were noted related to the mindfulness intervention.


Conclusions: The results of this program evaluation suggest that implementing a mindfulness-based intervention for persons experiencing SUDs/TBIs warrants further investigation.