Methadone Take-Home Program Extended Through 2022

The PsychiatryAdvisor article elaborated on the futures of two government programs that may help in reducing stigma and barriers to treatment for individuals with substance use disorders. While SAMHSA has decided to extend their methadone take-home flexibility program for another year, evidence of increased engagement in treatment and patient satisfaction has encouraged the discussion to make the program permanent. The second topic covered in the article addresses developments regarding the Build Back Better Act, which intends to “increase equitable access to comprehensive, high-quality addiction care”.

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Veterans Data Show Surge in Stimulant-Involved Deaths

As cocaine- and methamphetamine- involved death rates increase, especially in lieu of the pandemic, recent studies have revealed a spike in overdoses among military veterans. Death rates among this demographic, due to stimulant use, have tripped in the last six years. The article, by FilterMag, confronts the statistics behind the study, published in the journal, Addiction. The article particularly emphasizes the need for harm reduction strategies geared towards the individual risk factors of different populations.

To read FilterMag‘s article click here.

DEA takes aggressive stance toward pharmacies trying to dispense addiction medicine

The NPR article is keenly addresses the Drug Enforcement Administration’s questionable stance on buprenorphine. The article explores the issue through Martin Njoku’s personal anecdote entailing his experience of the DEA’s raid on his local pharmacy in West Virginia, ultimately resulting in the revocation of his registration to dispense controlled substances. What’s devastating is that the article confronts the existing barriers for addiction treatment as government agencies implement roadblocks founded upon stigma and a lack of understanding for substance use disorders. These roadblocks are affecting pharmacy operations in regards to the dispensation of MAT, such as Suboxone.

To read NPR‘s article click here.

People with substance use disorders may be at higher risk for SARS-CoV-2 breakthrough infections

A study led by NIDA researchers, published in World Psychiatry, investigates the rates of COVID-19 breakthrough infections among vaccinated individuals with substance use disorders (SUDs) compared to those without SUDs. The study addresses the effects of comorbidities and social determinants of health as they correlate with risks for substance use, affecting breakthrough infection risks.


To read Science Daily‘s summary of the article click here.


E-cigarettes don’t help smokers stay off cigarettes, study suggests

Science Daily‘s article addresses the contents of a recently published study uncovering findings contradicting previously anticipated effects of cigarette cessation when transitioning from cigarettes to e-cigarettes. E-cigarettes are often advertised as a less risky alternative to cigarette smoking- one that effectively substitutes the smoking behaviors one may have previously experienced with cigarettes. However, despite the CDC’s suggestion that e-cigarettes may be have some benefits for those trying to quit smoking, the study indicates that the e-cigarette alternative may extensively increase one’s risk of resuming cigaret smoking. Certainly, other methods for smoking cessation exist.

To read Science Daily‘s summary of the article click here.

To read the full scientific article on JAMA Network click here.



How serotonin curbs cocaine addiction

Science Daily‘s article explores a study, conducted by neuroscientists at the University of Geneva, using a novel experimental method to understand mechanisms behind cocaine addiction. The article addressed, “Synaptic mechanism underlying serotonin modulation of transition to cocaine addiction,” includes research on the roles of neuroregulators, serotonin and dopamine, on stimulant addiction as their mechanisms influence behaviors. The methods are particularly intriguing.

To read Science Daily’s summary of the article click here.

To read the full scientific article click here.

My mother was all I had — besides the drugs

Katherine Haley’s piece, published in The Boston Globe, is a must-read. Her story gives goosebumps as she lets readers into her experience with addiction, and her journey sheds light on the importance of empowerment as individuals experience unique struggles that influence their journey with substance use disorders.

To read the full article click here.

Does giving money to people with substance use disorder ‘enable’ them? It’s complicated.

Alex Woodruff’s article, featuring our director of special projects and research at BMC’s OBAT program,  Alicia Ventura, offers a well-articulated perspective to a controversial topic.  Published in The Boston Globe, Woodruff’s article explores the harmful consequences of “cutting-off” loved ones and community members with substance use disorders from resources. As individuals choose to forgo compassion, investing in the cycles of stigma surrounding addiction, literature that broadens our perspective and education have never been more valuable. 

To read the full article click here.

Disparities in opioid overdose deaths continue to worsen for Black people, study suggests

The NIH’s article addresses racial disparities in treatment for opioid use disorder. The article is based on the National Institute of Health’s study, published in the American Journal of Public Health, with the aim of “emphasizing the need for equitable, data-driven, community-based interventions that address these disparities.” As social issues drive the disheartening levels of inequity, the need for acting on inclusive approaches to the opioid crisis are imperative. 

To read the NIH‘s article click here.
To read the study published in the American Journal of Public Health click here.

Beyond dopamine: New reward circuitry discovered

Science Daily’s article recaps the discovery of a new reward pathway, studied by Bruchas Lab at the University of Washington School of Medicine. Understanding the complex neuroscience behind psychiatric diseases requires further exploration of reward circuitry. The research explores beyond the mesolimbic dopamine system and evaluates the intricate mechanics of reward and reinforcement.

To read the Science Daily article click here.
To read the Nature Neuroscience journal publication click here.