The opioid epidemic is taking the U.S., by storm, with people dying every day from opioid-related drug overdoses. But within what seems to be a bleak situation, researchers are looking at interventions to treat opioid addiction and related overdoses.

NSWA hosted an hour-long panel on June 25 that explored what researchers are learning about the opioid addiction and possible solutions to the crisis, and how we as science communicators can disseminate this research accurately and responsibly.

Our panelists:

  • Caleb Banta-Green is Principal Research Scientist at the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute and Affiliate Associate Professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Washington. He researches interventions to reduce harm related to illicit substance use. He also supports community implementation of evidence based programs including both technical support as well as internal and external communications.
  • Dr. Susan Ferguson currently runs a basic science research program investigating the neural circuits that regulate opioid and psychostimulant addiction. She is particularly interested in the factors that contribute to addiction vulnerability and resilience, and how the processes that underlie decision-making become maladaptive in addiction. She serves as the Faculty Liaison to the Office of Teaching, Education and Research at the Seattle Children’s Research Institute and she will be the Director of the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute at the University of Washington as of July 1.
  • Anna Boiko-Weyrauch is the main host and founder of Finding Fixes, a podcast that reports on solutions to the opioid epidemic. She leads the team of producers in her time outside of a full-time job as a staff reporter at NPR-affiliate KUOW 94.9 FM.