The Rise of Opioid Use in Rural Communities - Prevalence and Strategies
This webinar will describe state and local efforts to promote prevention and access to treatment and analyze national data on the prevalence of opioid in rural and urban settings. We conducted interviews with state-level key informants in four states to understand the challenges and promising practices in monitoring opiate prescribing and diversion, developing prevention interventions, and developing an opioid prevention and treatment infrastructure in rural communities.
To inform our choice of states and key informants, we recruited a panel of experts from federal agencies, policy centers and professional organizations to obtain their suggestions. Final selected states included North Carolina, Indiana, Vermont, and Washington. We also used data from the National Survey of Drug Use and Health to examine the prevalence of non-medical use of pain relievers and heroin in the past year in rural and urban areas and the socio-demographic and economic characteristics associated with their use. Additionally, we examined perception of risk in using heroin, injection drug use practices, driving under the influence, and law enforcement involvement.
John Gale, MS
Senior Research Associate, Population Health & Health Policy Program and Maine Rural Health Research Center, University of Southern Maine
John Gale has over a decade of experience in rural health and rural mental health research as well as sixteen years senior management experience in primary care, mental health and substance abuse practices. He has published a number of articles, reports, and book chapters in the areas of rural mental health, safety net, primary care, and hospital issues. His work has included studies of the national Medicare Rural Hospital Flexibility Program, the informal safety net in rural communities, and the use of state health policy research to inform federal and state policy; surveys of Rural Health Clinics; evaluations of the state Rural Hospital Flexibility Programs in Maine and New Hampshire; an assessment of the RWJ Southern Rural Access Program; and the management of the Mental Health Technical Assistance Program for the Mental Health Funding Collaborative in Maine.