The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has awarded $86 million to a consortium of researchers and implementers convened by Columbia University’s School of Social Work to address the epidemic of opioid overdose deaths in New York State. The CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy (CUNY SPH) is a key partner of the New York consortium which will focus on reducing opioid overdose mortality across 16 communities in New York State by 40 percent in the next four years. The project’s aims take a whole-community approach to foster systems change, including enhancing community engagement and coordination, increasing access to prevention and treatment of opioid use disorder, incorporating peer navigation into treatment, and reducing stigma. The New York consortium is part of the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH’s) Helping to End Addition Long Term (HEAL Initiative) and joins a network of teams from three other states that were also selected by NIH (Ohio, Kentucky, and Massachusetts).
At CUNY SPH, the research is led by Dr. Terry Huang, director of the Center for Systems and Community Design, and Dr. Denis Nash, Executive Director of the CUNY Institute for Implementation Science in Population Health. CUNY SPH faculty and staff will provide significant expertise in community health, systems science, epidemiology, and implementation/dissemination science to test the effectiveness of a systems-wide community change intervention in reversing the opioid epidemic in the 16 communities.Friday Letter Submission