Substance Use Disorder Programs

Allied Against Opioid Abuse

Prescription opioids are fueling a national epidemic. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an estimated 115 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose and more than 1,000 people are treated in emergency rooms daily for not using opioid prescriptions as directed.

Addressing the national opioid abuse epidemic requires bringing together stakeholders from all levels of government, the healthcare community and supply chain to provide patients and their families with information and resources to address the crisis and help prevent further harm.

That’s where Allied Against Opioid Abuse (AAOA) can help. AAOA is a partner-based educational initiative founded by the Healthcare Distribution Alliance to prevent prescription opioid abuse and misuse. The PA Foundation has joined with other leading partners including Caregiver Action Network, Mental Health America, the National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations, and the National Council on Patient Information and Education to arm healthcare providers, patients and their families with resources to help prevent old or unused prescriptions from ending up in the wrong hands.

By providing educational resources for patients and their caregivers, healthcare providers and pharmacists, AAOA hopes to help communities reduce the abuse and misuse of prescription opioids and provide resources to ensure unused medicines are safely disposed of to prevent unintended consequences.

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Vital Minds Podcast

The PA Foundation addresses the topic of substance use disorder in several episodes of its Vital Minds podcast:

Recent/Upcoming Programs

Recent Program: PA Student Substance Use Disorder Symposium at AAPA 2019 (held May 18, 2019)

Supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Clinical Trials Network Dissemination Initiative

In the news, on the streets, and in your future exam room, substance use disorder (SUD) is a public health crisis with an enormous cost. Students joined the PA Foundation for a symposium that explored the landscape of the SUD crisis and included a panel discussion/Q&A session with PAs practicing in addiction medicine and primary care.

PA panelists discussed:

  • Their interactions with SUD patients
  • How they build rapport and trust with patients
  • What motivates patients to seek help
  • Why it’s important for every PA to be prepared to treat patients with SUD

The presentation also included an overview of SUD resources for healthcare providers, and attendees received an electronic informational guide to take with them.

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Upcoming: “Addressing Substance Use Disorder: PA Student Curriculum”

Materials from the PA Student SUD Symposium are currently being converted into online resources that will be hosted on the PA Foundation website. These resources will comprise an online curriculum that is intended to supplement current SUD content included in PA program curricula.