Date of Submission


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)



Department Chair

Stephanie Felgoise, PhD, ABPP

First Advisor

David Festinger, PhD

Second Advisor

Robert DiTomasso, PhD, ABPP

Third Advisor

Michael Dolan, PsyD


For more than two decades, the opioid epidemic has swept through the United States and has caused thousands of deaths every year due to opioid overdose. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC; 2019) has reported that since 1999, over 770,000 Americans have died from overdoses. Nearly 70% of deaths in 2018 were due to opioids, 47% of which were the result of fentanyl or a non-methadone opioid and 22% were the result of heroin (CDC, 2019). As policy and treatment protocols attempt to manage those who seek treatment, the pharmaceutical industry has developed a life-saving medication that gives those who overdose another chance at recovery. Despite legislation allowing standing prescriptions and statewide access to naloxone, there continues to be some disconnect toward getting the layperson to be willing to intervene. The present study computed bivariate correlations and logistic regressions to identify factors that predict a person’s likelihood of administering naloxone should he or she encounter a person who has overdosed. An online survey was completed by 129 college students of various demographics. Factors examined included concern of legal and civil ramification, empathy, stigma toward substance use, and personal attribution of addiction. Results indicated the strongest predictor to be empathy. These findings can be used to inform future research to further foster support for naloxone distribution and use.