Nominate Outstanding Colleagues for the 2017 Dr. Frederick B. Glaser Award

December 22nd, 2016

Do you have a colleague who has demonstrated significant contributions to the citizens of NC in the field of alcohol or other substance abuse, in one or more of the following ways?

  • provided treatment for those suffering from addictive disorders
  • provided education, particularly related to training of medical or other health care professionals
  • conducted research
  • taken leadership in the political arena to increase funding or access to care

Nominees should have contributed in one or more of these areas, preferably having an impact beyond the personal or local realm. The nominee’s activities should demonstrate ongoing commitment and persistence of effort over a significant period of time. The extension of the impact of these activities beyond NC to the national level would be of significance, but not critical or necessary for consideration.

Nominate Now

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The Prescription Drug Abuse Advisory Committee (PDAAC)

December 22nd, 2016

NC PDAAC met at the Division of Public Health on December 9, 2016 and featured engaging presentations for participants to learn about, explore and clarify topics related to the prevention, intervention and treatment of opioid drug overdose and addiction with a special focus on the roles of pharmacies and regional efforts in Wilmington, NC.

Attendees heard presentations on Safer Opioid Prescribing for Post-Operative Pain, Collective Action: A Regional Focus on Wilmington, NC and How Pharmacists Can Help with the Opioid Crisis. The meeting also included updated PDAAC Report to the Joint Legislative Oversight Committees on Health and Human Services and on Justice and Public Safety.  

View Slides

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Prescription Rates by County Data Captured by the NC Controlled Substance Reporting System (CSRS)

December 22nd, 2016

North Carolina’s Health and Human Services published an interactive map showing information, by county, of the prescribing rates for opioids, benzodiazepines and stimulants for the years 2012 through 2015. It also includes the average morphine milligram equivalents, or MMEs. In a recent blog, Dr. Jana Burson explored the data for her county, resulting in questions regarding the MME calculations and how buprenorphine may skew the data. According to Alex Asbun, Manager of the DMHDDSAS Drug Control Unit, additional data maps will be issued over the next several weeks, including buprenorphine and other specific opioid medications.

Interactive Data Map

Dr. Burson’s Blog

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The 21st Century Cures Act A Win for Advocates of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Treatment

December 8th, 2016

President Obama signed the  21st Century Cures Act into law on December 13, 2016 remarking, “We are bringing to reality the possibility of new breakthroughs to some of the biggest health challenges of our time.” The Cures Act provides $1 billion over two years in grant to states for opioid abuse prevention and treatment such as improving prescription drug monitoring programs, implementing prevention activities, training for health care providers and expanding access to opioid treatment programs. As a result, SAMHSA has announced fund availability through State Targeted Response to the Opioid Crisis Grants (Opioid STR) and has scheduled two pre-application TA calls prior to the Application deadline of Friday, February 17, 2017.

NIH Perspective

Section-by-Section Summary

Opioid STR Grants

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Update on the Expansion of Access to Opioid Treatment

December 8th, 2016

Nurse practitioners (NPs) and physician assistants (PAs) will soon be able to prescribe buprenorphine for the treatment of opioid use disorders. They will be required to take 24 hours of coursework. NPs and PAs may take the eight-hour DATA-waiver course which physicians currently take. For the additional 16 hours, SAMHSA will offer the training for free through the PCSS-MAT once it has been developed. After NPs and PAs have completed the required 24 hours of training, they may apply for a waiver to prescribe to up to 30 patients beginning in early 2017. To keep up-to-date with announcements, you may sign up for SAMHSA’s Buprenorphine Waiver Management email list.

Buprenorphine Waiver Email List

Upcoming Trainings

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Medication Assisted Treatment for Opioid Addiction Myths & Facts

December 8th, 2016

Numerous studies have shown that Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) reduces illicit drug use, disease rates, and criminal activity among opioid addicted persons. Despite overwhelming evidence of MAT’s benefits, many people view it negatively. This resource may be useful in changing negative perceptions about methadone, buprenorphine, and injectable naltrexone.

Myths & Facts

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Successful Countywide Event Presented by the Gaston Controlled Substances Coalition

December 8th, 2016

Over 165 health care professionals attended a free CME event on October 22 presented by the Gaston Controlled Substances Coalition, with support from the Governor’s Institute. During Responding to the Opioid Challenge: Best Practices for Responsible Opioid Prescribing, participants heard from the NC Medical Board, NC State Health Director and experts in pain management, addiction medicine and drug screening to learn best practices for pain management, opioid prescribing, urine drug screening and practicing under new medical board guidelines.

An engaged team of local community partners including CaroMont Health, Gaston Family Health Services, Community Care of North Carolina, and the Gaston Community Healthcare Commission collaborated on the event. The Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services, Division of Public Health, NC Injury and Violence Prevention Branch and the Governor’s Institute are working to provide support for similar events in targeted counties across the state.

Interested in holding a similar training in your community? 

Email Pollen Williamson

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A Project of the Governor's Institute on Alcohol & Substance Abuse and the North Carolina Society of Addiction Medicine.
Funded wholly or in part by the federal Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant Fund (CFDA #93.959) as a project of the NC Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities & Substance Abuse Services.