House vote on opioids crisis bills: U-M experts can comment
The House of Representatives will continue voting this week on a package of bills to address the country’s opioids crisis. University of Michigan experts can comment on these bills as well as the Senate’s Opioid Crisis Response Act of 2018.
Rebecca Haffajee, assistant professor of health management and policy at the U-M School of Public Health, is also a lawyer whose work intersects law and public health. Her research looks at the effects of behavioral health and pharmaceutical policies. She can comment on the overall opioid problem, alternative therapies and use of data to track and analyze prescribing trends.
In a study published this month, Haffajee analyzed prescription drug monitoring programs around the country and identified state programs that are best at reducing opioid dosages. Also, in a JAMA article, she said more funding is needed to address the opioid epidemic that is projected to cost the U.S. economy $200 billion by 2020.
Carol Boyd is a professor at the U-M School of Nursing and director of U-M’s Center for the Study of Alcohol, Smoking & Health. She is an expert on drug epidemics and misuse patterns, with a focus on adolescents, women and sexual minorities. To meet the need for educating youth and parents about the risks of addictive medications, Boyd and colleagues developed an interactive physician-parent-patient educational contract based on data from the National Institutes of Health on the abuse of prescription opioids.
“When receiving a prescription for an opioid analgesic most youth and their parents receive little, if any, information,” she said. “We need to get clinicians communicating at the time the prescription is handed to the parent.”
John Traynor is a professor of pharmacology at the U-M Medical School and director of the new Edward F. Domino Research Center, which focuses on the discovery and testing of new medications to treat pain without addictive potential.
Chad Brummett is an associate professor of anesthesiology at the U-M Medical School who specializes in pain treatment. He also co-directs the Michigan Opioid Prescribing and Engagement Network, which studies the prescribing and use of opioids in surgical care, creates responsible prescribing guidelines for surgeons and others, and promotes efforts to remove excess opioids from the community.
Rebecca Cunningham is a professor of emergency medicine at the U-M Medical School and professor of health behavior and health education at the U-M School of Public Health. She also is director of the U-M Injury Prevention Center and associate vice president for research, health sciences, at U-M. She served on the Michigan Prescription Drug and Opioid Abuse Commission and spearheaded the creation of U-M’s Opioid Solutions website, which connects researchers studying all aspects of the opioid crisis with one another and with the community.
Amy Bohnert, associate professor of psychiatry at the U-M Medical School, is a health services researcher who studies the addiction treatment aspect of the opioid crisis. She designs and tests ways to reduce risky opioid use by patients and to increase the number of primary care clinics offering opioid addiction care. She also has provided scientific guidance to the Governor’s Prescription Drug and Opioid Abuse Task Force in Michigan and is a member of the core expert group that provided guidance to the CDC in developing its opioid prescribing guidelines for chronic pain.
Pooja Lagisetty, clinical lecturer in internal medicine at the U-M Medical School, is a primary care physician and veterans health researcher who provides and studies opioid addiction care in primary care settings, and beyond. Her work focuses on understanding and removing the barriers to treatment for opioid misuse in primary care settings.
Michael Smith is a clinical assistant professor at the U-M College of Pharmacy and a clinical pharmacist with Michigan Medicine, specializing in pain and palliative care. He is an expert on pain and symptom management, including opioids.