Maine Baseline Needs Assessment: First Responders Data Brief

University of Vermont, Center on Rural Addiction
M Lindsey Smith PhD, University of Southern Maine, Cutler Institute
Karen Pearson MLIS, MA, University of Southern Maine, Cutler Institute
Julia Shaw MPH, University of Vermont
Valerie Harder PhD, MHS, The Larner College of Medicine, University of Vermont
Nathaniel Schafrick, University of Vermont
Caitlin McCluskey, University of Vermont


This data brief provides findings from the Maine baseline needs assessment, conducted in collaboration with the research staff at the University of Southern Maine's Cutler Institute, with the goal to identify current and future substance use disorder (SUD) treatment needs and barriers in rural Maine. This data brief aims to fill a gap in knowledge regarding rural first responders’ involvement, perceptions, and beliefs regarding treatment for people with opioid use disorder (OUD). The brief details first responders’ concerns about substance use, treatment barriers, beliefs about treatment for OUD, and the impact of COVID-19 on substance use and treatment availability. Respondents included 203 community stakeholders, 81 of whom were first responders (74 working in fire and/or Emergency Medical Services, 7 in law enforcement). FMI: Please see additional Data briefs on the CORA website under Resources ( in the subsection Data Reports.