Funder: Harold Rogers Prescription Drug Monitoring Program: Data-Driven Responses to Prescription Drug Abuse
Start/End Dates: January 2017 – January 2019
Location: Lowell, Massachusetts
UMass Lowell Research & Evaluation Team: Wilson R. Palacios, Ph.D., Criminology and Justice Studies; Robin Toof, Ed.D., Center for Community Research & Engagement; Nicole Champagne, EdD, Public Health; and Melissa Wall, MA, Center for Community Research & Engagement
Funding will be used to form multi-disciplinary action groups consisting of local, state, and federal criminal justice professionals in addition to state and local health authorities as well treatment providers. Action group members may include (but are not limited to): district attorney’s office, state or local health department, state medical and pharmacy boards, police and sheriff departments, probation and parole, local drug treatment providers, and community organizations. The action groups will collect data from various sources such as medical examiners, emergency rooms, crime data, and other relevant sources that can help to corroborate PDMP data as well as provide additional information to help pinpoint specific locations within the county that are at-risk for prescription drug abuse and drug overdose deaths. Grant activities should focus on data sharing arrangements, data collection, and analysis. Project plan should describe the type of strategies to be developed and the areas (e.g., prevention, treatment, regulatory activity, enforcement) in which the action group plans to have impact to address prescription drug abuse rates in a defined jurisdiction(s). It is anticipated that grantees will determine best practices for sharing data, establishing effective policy and regulatory schemes, supporting investigations, treatment intervention, and prevention efforts for at-risk individuals and communities. Data should be used to identify areas at greatest risk for prescription drug abuse and overdose deaths and create data-driven responses at the local or state level to include education, outreach, treatment, and enforcement.