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Opioid Addiction Epidemic

Opioid Overdose Prevention Pilot Research

The Pittsburgh region is at the center of an epidemic, but it isn’t an infectious disease. It’s an insidious illness that has been quietly spreading in communities, killing more people each year than car crashes – opioid drug overdoses. The number of people dying in the region has more than tripled in the past decade, and the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health is piloting research projects to address the knowledge gaps of the opioid epidemic in a year-long initiative expected to lead to much larger life-saving efforts.
Six faculty led pilot research projects on opioid addiction and the overdose crisis:
  • Jeanine Buchanich on profiling PA mortality 1999-2015 – YouTube
  • Zan Dodson on social media & mapping opioid-use clusters - YouTube
  • Julie Donohue on prescribing - YouTube
  • Mary Hawk on community-engaged research into optimizing health and survival – YouTube
  • Christina Mair on mapping the problem with public data – YouTube
  • Tom Songer on unintentional poisoning – YouTube

Maximize One Book, One Community reads DREAMLAND

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Past opioid initiative events and webcasts

Maximize Dean Burke’s School-wide Address “Forecasting and Deflecting the Opioid Overdose Epidemic Curve" (9/14)

Minimize Modeling the Opioid Epidemic: Insights and Potential Solutions from Computational Science (Mon 10/2)

MON 10/2/2017 8:00AM - 5:00PM
Modeling the Opioid Epidemic: Insights and Potential Solutionsfrom Computational Science
PHDL/CTSI Workshop
University Club - Ballroom A
www.ctsi.pitt.edu/research-modeling-opioidworkshop2017

View webcast videos
(Videos available in this Panopto folder 10 minutes before each lecture.)   

WESA 90.5's Bridges to Health initiative coverage: Why The CDC Needs Number Crunchers On The Front Lines Of The Opioid Epidemic  (7min 8sec)

Contact

Michael Mallon
Project Coordinator, Opioid Initiatives
Pitt Public Health
412-624-5163
msm126@pitt.edu

Opioids in the News

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Analyzing street drugs an early warning system in opioid crisis  

Analyzing street drugs an early warning system in opioid crisis

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - Findings published in the journal Public Health Reports suggest that real-time information about stamp bags can be used to supplement current public health surveillance measures and could serve as an early warning of new illegal drugs of high lethality available at the local... (02/12/2018)
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Public Health Dynamics Lab on Opioid Crisis 

Public Health Dynamics Lab on Opioid Crisis

PITT NEWS – Nearly 3,000 Pennsylvanians died of opioid overdoses in 2015, according to the Public Health Dynamic's Laboratory. But researchers like MICHAEL MALLON (BCHS '13), the project coordinator for the Graduate School of Public Health's Opioid Initiatives, are working to change that statistic.... (02/05/2018)
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Creppage says real-time information about stamp bags could serve as early warning of new illegal drugs 

Creppage says real-time information about stamp bags could serve as early warning of new illegal drugs

MEDICAL LIFE SCIENCES NEWS - In two years, fentanyl went from nonexistent to found in more than 1 in 7 stamp bags. This new information "could be used to inform educational campaigns, allocate limited resources and devise prevention strategies," says KATHLEEN CREPPAGE (EPI '18) while EPI's ANTHONY ... (02/05/2018)
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Dean Burke on drug abuse trends 

Dean Burke on drug abuse trends

THE FLORIDA TIMES-UNION - The United States is the only developed nation in the word in which life spans are declining, in large part due to the scourge of overdose deaths. The last time life expectancy declined for two straight years was 1962 and 1963 during a flu epidemic. The drug abuse trends d... (02/05/2018)
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Pittsburgh is first stop for memorial for opioid overdose victims 

Pittsburgh is first stop for memorial for opioid overdose victims

WESA-FM – “Prescribed to Death: A Memorial to the Victims of the Opioid Crisis” has arrived at the University of Pittsburgh in the William Pitt Student Union. A machine carves a new pill on site every 24 minutes to represent the frequency of fatal overdoses. The wall will include up to 22,000 pil... (02/02/2018)
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Amid opioid crisis, Frank addresses Titusville community 

Amid opioid crisis, Frank addresses Titusville community

TITUSVILLE HERALD - Community members and students from Pitt's Titusville campus gathered to hear IDM's LINDA FRANK discuss drug misuse versus drug abuse, the opioid epidemic's relation to to the spread of HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C, available prevention and treatment strategies, and the implications... (01/29/2018)
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Wolf’s opioid declaration a step forward, but more help needed, says Burke 

Wolf’s opioid declaration a step forward, but more help needed, says Burke

POST-GAZETTE - If the declaration allows the free flow of medical data, it could help researchers come up with plans to control the epidemic, said Dean DONALD S. BURKE. “There’s currently substantial data on the opioid epidemic that is either hidden or lazy, meaning not being used,” he said. “We cou... (01/10/2018)


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