Expanding access to medication-assisted treatment in North Carolina. Providing training to drug court officials in Puerto Rico. Helping a Rhode Island grandmother start a support program for grandparents raising their grandchildren as a result of the opioid crisis.
All the above are projects the Collaborative to Advance Health Services has been collaborating on an $8 million sub award from the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry (AAAP) with a grant funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to combat the opioid crisis. The Collaborative to Advance Health Services, a research group within the UMKC School of Nursing and Health Studies, was a sub-recipient of a grant awarded last February to AAAP.
The grant allows a consortium, led by AAAP and through a partnership with the Collaborative to Advance Health Services, to provide technical assistance in addressing the opioid crisis. The term “technical assistance” refers to a variety of activities, including planning, training, coaching and raising awareness. The goal is to develop sustainable solutions for opioid-related issues within a community.
The Consortium takes requests from all 50 states and 7 U.S territories and their STR grantees as well as organizations and individuals.
“They really are community-oriented and on-the-ground requests, and I think that was a really good strategy to address, maybe, some barriers that communities are facing,” said Dr. Holly Hagle, an assistant research professor and co-director of the Addiction Technology Transfer Center Network Coordinating Office, a project housed at the Collaborative to Advance Health Services .
The Consortium handles a diverse range of requests. These unique needs are met by tailoring strategies to the communities they serve. For example, in New Jersey, it is implementing substance use prevention curricula in 13 private schools in the Orthodox Jewish community.
Even though the grant’s scope is nationwide, its impact is visible at the local level as well. The Collaborative to Advance Health Sciences has provided consultation for different projects in the Kansas City area, including the development of a recovery high school and a model recovery community. It has also received a request from a professor at the UMKC School of Medicine to provide training for students.
Although the State Targeted Response Technical Assistance (STR-TA) grant allows the Consortium to respond in a variety of ways, there is an overall focus on expanding evidence-based practices in the prevention, treatment and recovery, particularly medication-assisted treatment (MAT) of opioid use disorders and behavioral health practices.
“Addressing discrimination and lack of knowledge in communities about what could help people immediately, like [overdose-reversal drug] Naloxone and medication and access to care, is a large part of this initiative,” Hagle said.
Misunderstandings and myths can make it difficult for people with an opioid addiction to get the help they need, but recovery is a goal the Collaborative to Advance Health Services views as being entirely possible.
“They can sustain all their hopes and dreams with proper care and treatment, and we just want to make that accessible,” Hagle said.
By their work, the Collaborative to Advance Health Services is making UMKC a vital part of developing recovery resources in Kansas City and beyond.
“Through this project, we really put UMKC in a central role in the federal government’s effort to respond to the opioid epidemic,” said Laurie Krom, program director for the Collaborative to Advance Health Services.
In the summer of 2015, 17 students from under-resourced high schools in the Kansas City metro area, took their first steps on a journey toward future careers in healthcare. Now, in 2018, those students are taking another big step as they transition from high school to higher education.
They are the first cadre of students to complete the KC HealthTracks program at the University Missouri-Kansas City School of Nursing and Health Studies. KC HealthTrack’s goal is to engage students in the health-care professions and prepare them for success in health-related careers.
KC HealthTracks supports 127 high school students throughout the metro area. Participants attend a week-long summer program, where they have face-to-face faculty mentor sessions, visit health science programs at UMKC, Metropolitan Community College-Penn Valley and Rockhurst University, receive math and science tutoring, and take part in ACT prep sessions. KC HealthTracks offers students career exposure to each of the health sciences disciplines offered at UMKC: dentistry, health studies, medicine, nursing and pharmacy. Enrollment for the next summer’s camp begins in spring 2019. Additional partners include Missouri Area Health Education Council, KC Area Education Research Council, the Urban League and the UMKC KCStem Alliance.
The University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Nursing and Health Studies was awarded $676,000 to distribute to nursing students pursuing doctoral and master’s degrees who plan to be future nurse faculty. Priority is given to doctoral students in the award.
The Nurse Faculty Loan Program (NFLP) 2018-2019 award amount is the largest in UMKC history. The program, from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, offers partial loan forgiveness for borrowers who graduate and serve as full-time nursing faculty for the prescribed time period. The loan recipients can cancel 85 percent of the loan over four years in return for serving full time equivalents as faculty in any accredited school of nursing.
Dean Ann Cary is the principal investigator on the grant. For more information please contact Ms. Deidre Ashley (816-235-1723 or ashleyDL@umkc.edu)
The UMKC Interprofessional Education program conducted its second health sciences schools IPE competition late Spring 2018 at the School of Medicine. Students from the schools of medicine, nursing and health studies and pharmacy took part in the two-round, case-based competition.
The team of fifth-year medical students Joseph Bennett and Luke He and nursing student Joseph Bredvold won the first-place Emeritus Chancellor Morton Award for Interprofessional Excellence. The second-place team included fourth-year medical students Saber Khan, Zach Randall and Louis Sand, and pharmacy student Ann Lee.
A team of fifth-year medical students Kent Buxton and Christian Lamb, and pharmacy student Brad Erich, tied for third place with the team of Shannon Demehri and Hunter Faris, fifth-year medical students, and nursing student Caleb Jockey.
A panel of interprofessional faculty judged the competition based on diagnosis, treatment, pharmacotherapy, teamwork, communication and decision making. Judges for the event were Paul Cuddy, Pharm.D., Maqual Graham, Pharm.D., Cydney McQueen, Pharm.D., Eileen Amari-Vaught, Ph.D., M.S.N., F.N.P.-B.C., Doug Cochran, M.D., Jim Wooten, Pharm.D., and Emily Hillman, M.D.