The Role of Rural Hospitals in Addressing Substance Use Problems

Event Details
Wednesday, January 10, 2018
12:00pm to 1:00pm CST
National Rural Health Resource Center (The Center)

Speaker: John Gale, MS, Senior Research Associate, University of Southern Maine’s Rural Health Research Center

Substance use is an ongoing problem in rural communities. While the opioid crisis is a priority concern for many community leaders, the negative impact of substance use extends to other prescription medications such as benzodiazepines, tranquilizers, and stimulants; illicit drugs such as heroin, marijuana, cocaine, and methamphetamines; common household chemicals such as gasoline, solvents, aerosols, and glue; and alcohol. The drivers of substance use in rural communities involve a complex set of issues and an engaged community response is necessary to address these issues. Rural hospitals can play an important role in addressing community level substance use issues by implementing evidence-based prevention, treatment, and recovery strategies as part of their community benefit and population health portfolios. This session will explore the issues driving substance use in rural communities and discuss the role of rural hospitals in supporting and participating in community-based strategies and programs to address this ongoing population health problem.

This project is/was supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under grant number UB1RH24206, Information Services to Rural Hospital Flexibility Program Grantees, $1,009,121 (0% financed with nongovernmental sources). This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.