Brandeis think tank works to combat drug abuse

August 22, 2014

In June, Brandeis University hosted a meeting between the governors of five New England states, who gathered to discuss the problems of prescription drug abuse and overdoses and strove to work toward solutions.

Their long-term goals are to respond to the increase in prescription drug-related deaths, better monitor the doctors who prescribe these drugs and improve treatment and resources for people who battle addiction. One plan proposed at the meeting was to let patients cross state borders to receive the Medicaid treatment that they need.

“There’s just no doubt in my mind that the single thing that can undermine our quality of life as a region is addiction to opiates,” said Governor Paul Shumlin of Virginia in a statement to The Boston Globe.

In March, Governor Deval Patrick of Massachusetts declared a public health emergency in response to increasing deaths from opioid overdoses.

The event was facilitated by the Brandeis/Harvard NIDA Center to Improve the Quality of Drug Abuse Treatment, led by professors from both Brandeis and Harvard.

One Brandeis faculty member, Constance Horgan, Sc. D, is a director of the Center. She is a professor in the Schneider Institutes for Health Policy (part of the Heller School for Social Policy and Management).

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