Addiction Treatment Gap Is Driving A Black Market For Suboxone

Months in prison didn’t rid Daryl of his addiction to opioids. “Before I left the parking lot of the prison, I was shooting up, getting high,” he says.

Daryl has used heroin and prescription painkillers for more than a decade. Almost four years ago he became one of more than 200 people who tested positive for HIV in a historic outbreak in Scott County, Ind. After that diagnosis, he says, he went on a bender.

But about a year ago, Daryl had an experience that made him realize he might be able to stay away from heroin and opioids. For several days, he says, he couldn’t find drugs. He spent that time in withdrawal.

“It hurts all over. You puke, you get diarrhea,” Daryl says.

Full story at npr.org

Marijuana use associated with cognitive dysfunction in people with HIV who have substance abuse disorder, study finds

Marijuana use is associated with cognitive dysfunction in people with HIV infection who have an alcohol or other drug use disorder, according to a new study from researchers at Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH), Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM), and Boston Medical Center (BMC).

While researchers did not detect effects of lifetime cumulative exposure, the study, published in Substance Abuse, showed that more frequent current marijuana use was associated with a measure of cognitive dysfunction on the Medical Outcomes Study HIV Health Survey cognitive function scale.

“People with HIV infection have many reasons to have cognitive dysfunction, from the virus itself to medications for HIV infection and related conditions, particularly as they age,” said co-author Richard Saitz, professor and chair of community health sciences at BUSPH, who served as principal investigator on the study. “They also have symptoms like chronic pain and mental health symptoms, and use of marijuana, medically or recreationally, may seem like an option to consider. But at least among people with substance use disorders, it appears to have detrimental effects on cognitive function.”

Full story at Science Daily

Cost of Heroin Use in the U.S. Tops $51 Billion

The total cost of heroin use in the United States reached more than $51 billion in 2015, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

The cost estimate includes heroin-related crime and imprisonment, as well as addiction treatment and chronic infectious diseases contracted through heroin use, such as HIV, tuberculosis and hepatitis B and C, HealthDay reports. Other costs include treating newborns with heroin-related medical conditions, overdose deaths and lost productivity on the job.

Full story of cost of heroin use in the United States at drugfree.org

Cost-effective ways to combat HIV risk among intravenous drug users identified

With the abuse of opioids on the rise in the United States, Stanford University researchers are concerned that increased HIV transmission from shared needles won’t be far behind.

“There’s an opioid epidemic in our country, and there’s a real public health crisis associated with injecting,” said Cora Bernard, a graduate student in management science and engineering. “We think it’s important to understand what investments give highest value because HIV prevention programs, and especially programs that reduce the prevalence of injection drug use, can have outsized, positive impact on individuals, families and public safety.”

Bernard is the lead author of a study on prevention programs that could head off a resurgence of HIV and perhaps decrease the effects of the opioid crisis. The study will be published online May 24 in PLOS Medicine. The senior author is Margaret Brandeau, PhD, professor of management science and engineering.

Full story of cost effective ways to combat HIV risk at Science Daily

Quantum Units Education: New CEU Courses

Case Management and Substance Abuse Treatment

This CEU course is designed to establish a common starting point for case management work with substance abusers by provides interventions to help substance abusers access needed social services, as well as discussing the competencies necessary to implement case management functions and the relationship between those functions and the substance abuse treatment continuum.

Adult Sex Offenders

Statistics on the incidence and prevalence of sex crimes, as well as trend data, can provide important insight into the nature and extent of sexual violence that practitioners can use to design and deliver more effective prevention and intervention strategies.  This CE course presents empirically derived information that helps paint a portrait of what is currently known about the incidence and prevalence of sexual offending and victimization.  It also describes the strengths and weaknesses of the available data so practitioners can better assess and interpret the existing knowledge base.

Mental Health Needs of Youth Processed in Juvenile vs. Adult Court

This brief CEU course provides the results of a study of the prevalence of psychiatric disorders among youth transferred to adult criminal court compared with those processed in juvenile court.

HIV AIDS Clinical Care – Oral Health

This short CEU course provides information on oral health for those working with HIV and AIDS patients.

For more on these new CEU courses and many more, visit Quantum Units Education