Opioids, Care and Addiction

mainstay RI

mainstay RI is a collaboration between designers, health care professionals, and non-profit workers who envision a Rhode Island where people who use drugs are supported in their path to improved health and safety. Begun as a hackathon proposal, the core idea of Mainstay was a “soft and slow” place for people who’d recently woken up from an overdose. It takes the agency of people who use drugs as its first priority and attempts to create an environment where care workers and peers can enable people to define and follow their own path to better outcomes.


Mainstay RI was conceived at a 2019 hackathon run by the Center of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) on Opioids and Overdose at Rhode Island Hospital (funded by the NIH). As the winning proposal, the concept continues to be developed by members of the group comprised of staff from the Center for Complexity, Infosys employees, a community organizer, and health care workers, using the first place $15,000 grant award. 


An exploratory research phase (interviews, virtual site visits, sketches of new ideas of care) is planned for Spring 2021 to incorporate the knowledge and insights of people with lived overdose experience, and healthcare providers working with persons with opioid use disorder. The research will increase our understanding of how factors such as care team composition, therapeutic approaches, and physical care delivery spaces might promote or inhibit the agency of drug users.

mainstay, RI website
Rhode Island COBRE Opioids Hackathon
Rhode Island Hospital crowns winner of “Hackathon” – ABC6 News
2020 Symposium on Substance Use Research Short Presentation
read more about the project here