NIDA and SAMHSA agreement expedites transfer of research findings to clinical practice

September 27, 2002

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) today announced a unique intra-agency agreement to expedite the application of findings from treatment research into clinical application.

The $1.5 million agreement between NIDA and SAMHSA's Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) will help ensure that findings from NIDA's treatment research will be quickly and readily available to practitioners around the country.

Dr. Glen R. Hanson, NIDA Acting Director, says, "This collaborative effort puts into place a system whereby health care providers can be more rapidly alerted to new and improved medications and behavioral therapies with which to treat patients for drug abuse and addiction."

SAMHSA Administrator Charles G. Curie noted that "This partnership is a significant step in our efforts working with the National Institutes of Health to define and develop a "Science to Services" cycle and to reduce the time between the discovery of an effective treatment or intervention and its adoption as part of community-based care. Today, the Institute of Medicine tells us it can take up to 20 years."

Under the agreement, NIDA will provide funding to support CSAT's Addiction Technology Transfer Centers (ATTC), a network comprised of 14 independent regional centers and a national office charged with increasing the knowledge and skills of addiction treatment practitioners and fostering alliances to support and implement best treatment practices. The purpose of the agreement is to enhance efforts to disseminate and apply findings from NIDA's National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network (CTN) as well as other NIDA-supported studies to practitioners served by the ATTCs.

Grants totaling almost $6 million were awarded this week to add three nodes--Northern New England (covering 5 states), New Mexico, and Arizona--to NIDA's CTN. The network. is now comprised of 17 research nodes around the country. These nodes are conducting a variety of research protocols on behavioral, pharmacological, and integrated behavioral and pharmacological treatment interventions in 27 states at 120 community treatment sites. More than 3,500 patients are participating in these studies. The CTN is designed to determine treatment effectiveness across a broad range of community-based treatment settings and diversified patient populations.

Dr. Hanson says that this intra-agency agreement will mutually augment the outreach and impact of both NIDA and CSAT's efforts to ensure that science-based findings are incorporated into clinical practice. "And the most important beneficiaries," he says, "will be those individuals in treatment and recovery from substance abuse disorders."
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The National Institute on Drug Abuse is a component of the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIDA supports more than 85 percent of the world's research on the health aspects of drug abuse and addiction. The Institute carries out a large variety of programs to ensure the rapid dissemination of research information and its implementation in policy and practice. Fact sheets on the health effects of drugs of abuse and other topics can be ordered free of charge in English and Spanish through NIDA InfoFacts at 1-888-NIH-NIDA (644-6432) or 1-888-TTY-NIDA (889-6432) for the deaf. These fact sheets and further information on NIDA research and other activities can be found on the NIDA home page at http://www.drugabuse.gov.

SAMHSA, a public health agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is the lead federal agency for improving the quality and availability of substance abuse prevention, addiction treatment and mental health services in the United States. Information on SAMHSA's programs is available on the Internet at www.samhsa.gov.

NIH/National Institute on Drug Abuse

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