National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Maryland Chapter

2019 Tuerk Conference on Mental Health and Addiction Treatment  

Baltimore Convention Center


Tuesday, April 23, 2019 -- 08:00 AM to 05:00 PM

PLENARY: Decriminalization: Lessons from Portugal's Drug Policy
João Castel-Branco Goulão, M.D., General-Director for Intervention on Addictive Behaviours and Dependencies in Portugal
Dr. Goulao will present a new approach to drug policy that is used in Portugal. Dr. Goulão's talk will address decriminalization, policy and harm reduction through the successful case study of Portugal. Portugal enacted one of the most extensive drug law reforms in the world when it decriminalized low-level possession and use of all illicit drugs nearly a decade and a half ago. Results of the Portuguese experience demonstrate that drug decriminalization – alongside a serious investment in treatment and harm reduction services – can significantly improve public safety and health.

PLENARY: Overview of Lessons Learned on Addiction Treatment ~
Lipi Roy, M.D., MPH, Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Population Health, NYU Langone Health, and former Chief of Addiction Medicine, NYC jails including Rikers Island
Dr. Roy’s presentation will focus on how the U.S. currently addresses drug use and addiction, and the lessons we can learn from Portugal, how we can implement evidence-based strategies, including harm reduction. Dr. Roy’s visit with Portugal’s drug policy experts taught her important lessons but also reinforced key concepts that need to be implemented in the United States. Ever since Portugal decriminalized all drugs in 2001, the data has been astounding. Drug-related HIV infections have decreased by 95%. Overdose fatalities dropped from 80 in 2001 to only 16 in 2012. By alarming contrast, 72,000 people died in the U.S. from drug-related causes in 2017.

PLENARY: Panel Discussion ~ Treatment behind the Walls
Robert P. Schwartz, M.D. Psychiatrist and Medical Director of the Friends Research Institute
Josiah "Jody" Rich, Professor of Medicine & Epidemiology, Warren Albert Medical School of Brown University; Joshua D. Lee, M.D., Associate Professor of Medicine at NYU School of Medicine Opioid Use Disorder is prevalent among detainees and prisoners, yet effective treatment is typically not available behind the walls. Community treatment is often discontinued during incarceration and opportunities to reduce the likelihood of illicit opioid use during incarceration and after release are missed. This presentation will describe the use of FDA approved pharmacotherapy for OUD for this population, present relevant research findings, and discuss bringing treatment to scale in Rhode Island.


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