Opioid Treatment Program Helps Keep Families Together

Velva Poole has spent about 20 years as a social worker, mostly in Louisville, Ky. She’s seen people ravaged by methamphetamines and cocaine; now it’s mostly opioids. Most of her clients are parents who have lost custody of their children because of drug use. Poole remembers one mom in particular.

“She had her kids removed the first time for cocaine. And then she had actually gotten them back,” she says. But three months later, the mother relapsed and overdosed on heroin.

“She had to go through the whole thing all over again — having supervised visits with the kids, then having overnights,” Poole recalls. Starting again from the bottom, the mom took steps to reclaim her life.

And, eventually, she did regain custody of her children. Poole recently ran into the woman at the grocery store.

Full story at npr.org

Transgender Students Face Higher Rates of Substance Abuse, Study Finds

Transgender adolescents have higher rates of illicit and prescription drug use when compared to non-transgender adolescents, according to a new study.

The study, published in the Journal of School Health, found transgender students were 2.5 times more likely than non-transgender students to use cocaine and methamphetamines in their lifetime and twice as likely to report the misuse of prescription pain medication.

The findings were the result of a secondary analysis of the 2013-2015 California Health Kids Survey (CHKS) — a statewide survey of elementary, middle and high school students — that examined the recent, in-school and lifetime use of drugs and alcohol among 4,778 transgender and 630,200 non-transgender students.

Full story at NBC News

NIDA Will Award Money to Researchers Who Build Apps for Addiction Research

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) will award $100,000 to researchers who develop apps for addiction research, according to Fortune. The apps must be built using Apple’s medical research framework.

NIDA’s challenge, called “Addiction Research: There’s an App for that,” is requiring that app developers use Apple’s ResearchKit, an open-source software kit designed for biomedical and health research that is accessed through an iPhone. In a news release, NIDA says the goal of the challenge is to “create an app to be used by addiction researchers in future studies which will help to improve the scientific understanding of drug use and addiction.”

NIDA hopes the challenge will create apps that help advance scientific research in areas of nicotine, opioids, cannabinoids (including marijuana), methamphetamines and prescription drug use, the article notes.

Full story of researchers who build apps for addiction research at drugfree.org