Date of Award


Document Type

Restricted Access Thesis

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)



First Advisor

Lisa Van Getson, APRN, DNP, FNP-C

Second Advisor

Susanne M. Cutshall, APRN, DNP, CNS


Substance use disorder (SUD) is an epidemic in the United States. There are established, evidence-based protocols for treating SUD, however relapse remains common. Conventional relapse prevention teaches avoidance of situations and emotions that previously led to substance use. This scholarly project proposes mindfulness-based meditation as an adjunct to conventional relapse prevention. Mindfulness-based meditation focuses on acceptance, rather than avoidance, of emotions and sensations that have previously lead to substance use or relapse. Mindful Relapse Prevention is a group- based mindfulness meditation program designed to promote sobriety in individuals with SUD. Martha Roger’s theory The Science of Unitary Human Beings (SUHB) and her concept of energy fields help illustrate that mindfulness-based mediation may help prevent relapse in individuals with SUD. The SUHB provided the theoretical framework for this scholarly project. Mindful Relapse Prevention was implemented in July and August 2021 at a previously established group meeting of individuals with co-occurring homelessness and substance use disorders. Due to the scale of this project the author was unable to come to any concrete conclusions or address any gaps in the current literature. Rather, Mindful Relapse Prevention confirmed that more research is needed in the efficacy of mindfulness-based mediation as an effective means of preventing relapse in individuals with substance use disorder.


SC 11.DNP.2023.Kearney.E