May 4th Sessions

Self-Guided Meditation / Intention
Rev. Sarah S. Howell-Miller

Join us as we prepare for Day 1 of the Summit by participating in meditation and intention setting.

Coffee & Conversation: Peer Support Specialists
Stephanie Howard

Self-Care: When you’re actively addicted to alcohol or drugs or maintaining abstinence, it can be difficult to engage in regular self-care. Discussing self-care during group can give insight into what other people do to take care of their physical and mental health. Ask other group members to share their routines and explain how those routines have helped them during the recovery process.

Habits: Everyone has bad habits, but some habits are more destructive than others. group topic could discuss bad habits and how they can be replaced with positive ones. Covering this topic during group can help you uncover some of your own bad habits and get ideas for good habits from your fellow group members.

Coffee & Conversation: OTPs
Anna Stanley

This will be a networking/engagement opportunity for OTP staff to meet with one another in a space that allows for the discussion of topics at the summit that will be of particular interest to this cohort. Come have coffee and conversation with the SOTA team! NOTE: Please make sure to have your audio muted and camera off initially, and utilize the live platform chat box to ask question or ask to comment. Once recognized, share your video and unmute your mic for conversation.

They Have Always Been Our Children
Daryl V. Atkinson

Attorney Atkinson will juxtapose the public health, law enforcement, and legislative responses to the contemporary opioid overdose crisis with how those institutions responded to the crack cocaine epidemic during the mid 1980’s and 1990’s.

Investing in the Harm Reduction Workforce
Orisha Bowers & Gina Musa

Working in harm reduction and overdose prevention poses many challenges from the trauma and burnout of losing participants to an overdose and supporting yourself or staff with their own substance use, to the frustrations of not having room for professional development or a career ladder for growth. Investing in the harm reduction workforce is essential to ensuring we can continue this critical work to prevent the unintended consequences of substance use, such as infectious disease transmission and overdose deaths. This session will include a presentation from Gina Musa at UNC IPRC on the SHARP initiative, an effort to build a harm reductionist community in Appalachia, and Dr. Orisha Bowers from the national Harm Reduction Coalition on the Nonprofit Management Training initiative and the Harm Reduction Leadership Bootcamp. This session will also include a discussion on what more we can do to support the harm reduction workforce.

Looking Back to Look Forward: A Legislative Perspective
Anna Stein and Steve Mange

This session will review the key policies enacted in North Carolina over the past decade and examine what the policy landscape will look like moving forward to advance harm reduction and curb the overdose crisis in the State. Steve Manage will discuss the STOP Act, efforts to ensure patient protection, and the Governor’s Racial Equity Task Force. Anna Stein will discuss efforts to expand naloxone access, the Good Samaritan law, Syringe Services Programs, and legislation for Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT).

What Are They Telling You?
Director Victor Armstrong and Natasha Donnelly

This session will focus on a conversation around people who use drugs, suicidality, and the reasoning behind it. The session will also discuss complex trauma and the effect on marginalized populations, especially in communities of color.

Data to Action: The Opioid Action Plan 2.0 Data Dashboard
Mary Beth Cox and Mike Dolan Fliss

This session will give an overview of the NC Opioid Action Plan 2.0 dashboard development process, changes made based on user feedback, and lessons learned on ways to move data to action. Participants will learn how to utilize the dashboard and have an opportunity to provide feedback.

Lunch & Conversation: Addressing Strengths & Resilience Factors
Gerri Mattson and Catherine Joyner

Adverse childhood experiences are common and unrecognized and are believed to be occurring more often during the pandemic. This discussion session will focus on the correlation between ACEs and opioid misuse and addiction and upstream prevention strategies occurring in North Carolina.

Lunch & Conversation: Tobacco Policy in OTPs
Steph Gans

TBD…

Lunch & Conversation: Harm Reduction/Syringe Services Programs
Ainsley Bryce

Since the introduction of Harm Reduction to the US in the early 1980’s the practice has evolved and expanded. The Harm Reduction we practice today wouldn’t have been possible without our founders, mentors and advocates over the past 40 years. For this session we will discuss new school and old school Harm Reduction, how we are influenced by our past, how new Harm Reductionists have improved the movement and how the scene has changed for better and worse.

Whitewashed: The Opioid Crisis in African American Communities
Tracie Gardner, Hailey Hartman, and Sindhu Shamasunder

Much of the images and media we see about our Nation’s current opioid crisis centers the white, middle-class user in a gentler way than Blacks and Hispanics were depicted during the crack epidemic. However, overdose rates are rapidly rising among Black and Hispanics and this important narrative is being overlooked. This session will present the increasing trends in overdose deaths among African Americans on both a national and state scale and discuss “the double standard” and how it perpetuates harm to Black and Brown communities.

Learning from Other States
Sharone Mitchell and Justice Van Ingram

In this session, we will discuss the importance of states sharing information and ideas and learning from each other. We will highlight Kentucky’s response to the opioid epidemic from legislation to programs and beyond, including trailblazing initiatives like their more recent Center for Medicaid Services waiver to provide some Medicaid services to people while they are incarcerated and hear from an organizer who was involved, on-the-ground, to drive the historical changes made to the Illinois cash bond system.

Faith-Based Responses to Substance Use
Sarah Howell-Miller, Brett McCarty, and Rachel Meyer

In this session, we will hear from representatives of two different but complementary initiatives representing faith-based responses to substance use. Rev. Sarah Howell-Miller will uplift her work with Faith in Harm Reduction, a collaboration between the National Harm Reduction Coalition and Judson Memorial Church, and their new Spirit of Harm Reduction Toolkit. Rev. Howell-Miller will also speak to the local church experience of supporting harm reduction in her role as Senior Pastor of Green Street United Methodist Church in Winston-Salem, NC, which hosts Twin City Harm Reduction Collective, a syringe service program, in its building. In the second part of this session, Brett McCarty and Rachel Meyer will focus on the work of the Churches Promoting Recovery (CPR) Project and their efforts to develop accessible resources through translational research that will help churches stem the tide of opioid and substance use issues. McCarty and Meyer will present early findings from their research on varying responses across denominational and demographic differences, and they will describe their plans for dissemination and implementation of resources and best practices based on those findings.

Using the North Carolina Controlled Substance Reporting System Data to Inform Prescription Medication Overdose Prevention Strategies
Melinda Pankratz and Alex Akushevich

This presentation describes how North Carolina Controlled Substance Reporting System (CSRS), North Carolina’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) data can and is being used for prescription medication overdose prevention. It include an overview of the CSRS, the types of data available within the CSRS, how PDMP data is used across the nation, and will highlight how the Strategic Prevention Framework-Rx uses CSRS data for prescription overdose prevention in North Carolina.

SSP Health Hubs: Expanding Access to HIV Prevention, HCV Treatment, and MOUD
Becca Rose, Merhi McKellar, Michelle Mathis, and Tim Nolan

Individuals with opioid use disorder (OUD) often face barriers in accessing healthcare services, particularly prevention and treatment for OUD and for infectious diseases associated with injection drug use, such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis. Barriers include stigma and discrimination, lack of insurance coverage or transportation, homelessness, and other comorbid conditions. Low barrier models for care, such as bringing treatment via telemedicine or to community-based settings like syringe services programs (SSPs) where people are already accessing services, are critical to identify and reduce or eliminate hurdles to people being able to initiate and/or continue care and treatment. This session will highlight two models of leveraging partnerships to expand access to care for people who use drugs in NC; 1. Olive Branch Ministry’s model for co-locating buprenorphine and HCV treatment and 2. a Telemedicine model to Provide Buprenorphine and PrEP at two SSPs. Speakers will discuss lessons learned and opportunities to expand low barrier treatment and care for people who use drugs across North Carolina.

OTPs: Choosing The Right Level of Care for OUD
Eric Morse

This session will give you a sense of what an opioid treatment program is about and why methadone is a superior, life-saving medicine for subsets of patients suffering with OUD over buprenorphine and naltrexone. Dr. Morse will get on his soapbox and explain why he believes hospitals, rehabs, jails and prisons that do not allow patients to remain on their medications are discriminating against them.

May 5th Sessions

Coffee & Conversation: Primary Prevention
Stacey Stottler (Moderator)

This Coffee and Conversation will allow individuals to engage in discussion on the use of evidence-based primary prevention strategies geared toward youth in reducing prescription opioid misuse. Strategies discussed will include family and youth prevention education programming and communication campaigns.

Coffee & Conversation: MAT in Jails (Justice Involved Programs)
Major Elijah Bazemore

“We must have a paradigm shift around the standard of care for individuals that are detained in Detention facilities with an opioid use disorder (OUD). When an individual is detained, we are required to conduct both a medical and a mental health assessment. It is imperative that detention centers and jails begin to address OUD. Major Elijah Bazemore of the Durham County Detention Center will facilitate this discussion.”

Coffee & Conversation: General Lobby/Special Interest Fun Engaging
TBD

Welcome to the Summit Lobby. Sip on your morning beverage and connect with other attendees and ask planning committee members questions about the Summit. NOTE: Please make sure to have your audio muted and camera off, and utilize the platform live chat box to ask a question. Once recognized, share your video and unmute your mic for conversation.

Guided Yoga: Vibe with Voni
Voni Simpson

“Vibe with Voni” — Start the day with mindful movements and breath-work. No equipment or fancy clothes needed. Come with an open mind willing to embrace the feel and flow.

Proactive Prevention: Exploring Opioids and Polysubstance Use Trends
Erin Day and Anna Godwin

This session will focus on the idea that substances are not typically used singularly. Participants will be exposed to research that connects substances most commonly used together. Presenters will explore substance connections and participants will have the opportunity for dialogue at the end of the session. Additionally, participants will receive the information discussed in the presentation via a research doc in the form of an infographic.

Housing A Key Cornerstone of Health: Understanding Your Rights and Housing Resources
Angela Harper King and Dave Crispell

Access to safe and affordable housing is a cornerstone of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, which is reflected in not only in basic needs but also psychological and ultimately self-fulfillment needs. This session features two speakers who believe that having access to housing that is safe and affordable is vital to one’s recovery, quality of life, and ultimate health. Their two perspectives will walk us through how this is implemented from an agency level and a community level.

Role of Pharmacists in Overdose Prevention and Harm Reduction
Cheryl Viracola

Provide updates/details with regards to NCAP programming and initiatives in last year that have championed pharmacists’ role in harm reduction and preventing opioid overdose.

Expanding Drug User Health at Community Health Centers
Jamie Carter and Rick Moore

Community health centers play an important role in responding to the overdose crisis and addressing the unintended harms of substance use. This session will examine two model’s for expanding drug user health at community health centers: Dr. Jamie Carter will share how Lincoln Community Health Center is offering low barrier Medication for Opioid Use Disorder and Dr. Rick More will discuss how they are providing hepatitis care for people who use drugs at Rural Health Group.

Poly-Substance Use Trends in NC
Mary Figgatt and Dorothy McNair

Multiple substances have been increasingly identified among people who fatally overdosed in North Carolina. This session will review trends in polysubstance involvement and how polysubstance involvement differs among individuals and communities.

Reimaging Public Safety: Racial Equity, Criminal Justice Reform, and Diversion
Allison Robertson, Melissia Larson, and Jasmine McGhee

In June 2020, Governor Cooper created the Task Force for Racial Equity in Criminal Justice (“TREC”), in response to longtime racial inequities in our criminal justice system, and to the particular moment of the spring and summer of 2020 in the aftermath of the killing of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.  TREC issued 125 recommendation in December 2020 to improve racial equity in our criminal justice system.  This session will focus on TREC’s recommendations that are related to mental health and substance use disorder and further highlight the front-end issue of pre-arrest diversion.  Specifically, Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) is a community-based diversion approach with the goals of improving public safety, connecting people who use drugs to services and supports, and reducing unnecessary criminal legal system involvement among program participants. This session will highlight models for LEAD programs and lessons learned from an evaluation of this approach. Speakers will also discuss the opportunities for LEAD to contribute to undoing racial disparities in our communities and the systems that exist within them.

Lunchtime Plenary: Legislative Panel
Moderated by TBD…

TBD…

There’s No Such Thing as a Single-Drug Epidemic: Addressing Polysubstance Use in Policy and Practice
Andrea G. Barthwell

In this one-hour webinar, Dr. Andrea Barthwell, a former president of the American Society of Addiction Medicine, will discuss polysubstance use and its implications for policy and practice. She will provide a concise overview of the medical literature covering multiple drug classes and offer analysis based on her 30-plus years of experience in addiction medicine. She will conclude with recommendations for stakeholders as they develop their prevention, intervention, treatment, and comprehensive care strategies.

Navigating Substance Use, Treatment, and Pregnancy
Melinda Ramage, Tammy Cody, and Becca Rose

Although treatment for opioid use disorder (OUD) during pregnancy is known to improve maternal and neonatal health outcomes, only a third of pregnant women with OUD receive medications for opioid use disorder (MOUD), the standard of care. One of the biggest barriers to both MOUD and prenatal care for people who use drugs is the stigma and discrimination they experience within the healthcare system. These barriers to care not only can negatively impact the health of the parent and the child, but can increase the risk of an overdose. During this session, participants will hear from experts at a comprehensive perinatal substance use treatment program in Western North Carolina, as well as harm reductionists and people with their own experiences navigating drug use, treatment, and pregnancy.

Shifting the Narrative to Shift Our Response: The Impact of the Opioid Epidemic in American Indian Communities
Annette Hubbard and Ronny Bell

Unlike many of the media depictions we see, the unintended opioid overdose death rates in North Carolina for American Indians closely follow the rates for Whites. It is imperative that overdose prevention and harm reduction services are offered equitably to racial and ethnic groups throughout our state. In this session, we’ll hear from a national harm reduction consultant who specializes in drug user health approaches that reach American Indian and Alaskan Native populations and the Chair of the North Carolina American Indian Health Board, whose research is focused on health disparities that impact racial/ethnic minority and rural populations, with a particular focus on American Indians.

The Role of Oxford Houses in Recovery
Will Madison

This Session will provide an Overview of Oxford Houses in the State Of NC, explain the process to obtain houses, provide an understanding of the PEER Advocate Program, The Reentry Initiative, and will also explain the evolution in philosophy of accepting individuals on MAT.

May 6th Sessions

Self-Care: Journaling (Guided Session)
Moderated by Alyssa Kitlas

Close out the final day through a guided journaling experience that will allow you to begin to process all you have gleaned from the Summit.

Coffee and Conversation: Post Overdose Response Teams
Chase Holleman

This conversation is for individuals interested in post-overdose response teams (also called Quick Response Teams, Rapid Response, Community Response Teams, etc.) and other ways to meaningfully support people who have experienced an overdose.

Coffee and Conversation: MOUD Provider
Blake Fagan

A round table for providers to discuss prescribing medications for opiate use disorder and the barriers that they are experiencing.

Coffee and Conversation: Data Driven Coffee Conversation: How are local communities using data for action and response?
Alison Gunn

This conversation will focus on how local communities are and can use both qualitative and quantitative data for action and response. Topics will include using data for grant reporting, program monitoring, and quality improvement.

Centering Trans and Non-Binary Communities in our Work
Raye Dooley and Sarah Murray

Trans and non-binary people experience ubiquitous marginalization and oppression; substance use, in many ways, is a perfectly rational response. As public consciousness about trans existence rises, well-meaning organizations are newly seeking to engage trans people in their work but are also doing so without ever addressing the legacy of harm that they have participated in. Come join us for an exploration of why we must move away from a framework of diversity and inclusion and toward one of centering and transformation.

Check Yourself: Working with People Who Use Drugs and Engage in Sex Work in a Non-judgmental and Compassionate Way
Gina Musa, Reid Getty, and Colin Miller

People who use drugs and engage in sex work experience stigma in most of the interactions that they have with the healthcare system and stigma remains one of the biggest barriers to care. Stigma shows up in many forms such as harmful comments or looks, withholding treatment or care because you don’t think the individual cares about their health, and people being afraid to access treatment because they have experienced bad treatment so many times before. This session will cover how to work with people who use drugs and engage in sex work in a non-judgmental and compassionate way. Speakers from UNC’s Injury Prevention Research Center (IPRC), North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition (NCHRC), and North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) will highlight why non-judgmental and compassionate care is critical to our response to the overdose crisis.

Prevention and Treatment in Juvenile Justice System
William L. Lassiter and Keesha White

Young people who use drugs, licit and illicit, often experience a range of consequences, including substance dependency and involvement with the juvenile justice system. This session will frame how prevention and treatment services are provided to this special population.

Strength and Numbers: a Partnership between People Who Use Drugs and Researchers
Louise Vincent, Nab Dasgupta, and Liz Joniak-Grant

People who use drugs (PWUD), patients with chronic pain, and academic researchers have a shared goal to improve public health. However, there can be a disconnect between these worlds. Drug user-led research has had some notable successes, but has failed to catch on more widely. Patients with pain are not routinely included in research or policy evaluation. This session will describe applied efforts to increase participation from those with lived experience. Co-equal presenters are from the North Carolina Survivors Union (NCSU) and the University of North Carolina Injury Prevention Research Center (UNC IPRC).

The First 72: Exploring Different Models for Post Overdose Response Teams
Mike Campbell, Captain Dale Chandler, and Chase Holleman

“Post-overdose response teams (PORTs; also called Quick Response Teams, Rapid Response, Community Response Teams, etc.) are an emerging strategy to meaningfully engage with people who have experienced overdose.

These teams follow up with patients who have experienced an overdose within 72 hours to link them to appropriate care ranging from harm reduction services to treatment to recovery supports. This session will examine two models for

post overdose response programs, first highlighting an EMS run program in Stanly County and then exploring Guilford County’s Solution to the Overdose Problem (GCSTOP)’s community based program. Opportunities to connect with other programs in the State to share best practices and lessons learned will also be discussed.”

The Reality of Re-entry
C. Daniel Bowes, Frankie Roberts, Daquan Peters, and Crystal McIver

95% of all individuals who are incarcerated will return to their communities at some point. In this session, panelists will discuss re-entry from incarceration from policy to personal experiences and the importance of providing client-led programming and resources. The dynamic panel will include a recognized re-entry policy advocate, the Executive Director of an agency that provides shelter and services to individuals returning home to rebuild their lives after incarceration, a local leader with lived-experience, and an emerging expert on the unique challenges of women and girls post-release.

Lunch Plenary: Equity
Kassandra Frederique

TBD…

Utilizing Communications Campaign to Create Local Policy Change
Holly Carter, Jill McLelland, and Derrick Vickers

A Communication Campaign can help shape attitudes, values and behaviors in order to reach a desired outcome. The Lock Your Meds Communication Media Campaign is successfully achieving the outcome of decreased access to prescription medications in North Carolina. Campaigns like this can provide leverage needed to create and change policy at a local level as well as State and Federal levels. In this presentation, hear from some North Carolina prevention providers about some of the innovative ways their coalitions have supported creating and changing policy in their communities to improve safe storage and disposal of prescription medications, resulting in decreased access. Take away strategies that your community can use to reach desired outcomes with a campaign like this.

A Look at Jail-Based Programs
Lauren Brinkley-Rubenstein, Jason Jackson, Evelyn McGill, and Margaret

The session will highlight an array of evidence-based, substance use programming within local jails. This session will review Durham County Detention Center’s trailblazing MAT program, the Pitt County Detention Center’s gender-specific W.E.A.R. program, and the Mecklenburg County Detention Center’s Community Support Services Substance Use Treatment Program with focus on onsite continuum of care, in which various practices are incorporated to increase experiential learning and wellness.

OTP Operations During COVID-19 and Related Policy Initiatives
Mark Parrino

This presentation will discuss how OTPs operated throughout the COVID-19 pandemic in addition to discussing policy initiatives to increase access to MAT in the criminal justice system and under served areas of the United States.

Equity Plenary Panel Discussion
Dr. Haner Hernandez and Tracie Gardner

“Join us for our Closing Plenary. We will have Remarks from Leadership, a call to action and a final Equity Plenary Discussion.
In our closing plenary, we’ll hear from two panelists, Dr. Haner Hernandez and Tracie Gardner, with more than 60 years combined of health and human services experience about the importance of providing equitable access in the delivery of harm reduction, treatment, and recovery services and how working to eliminate the disparities that show up in these systems of treatment will have vast benefits for communities as a whole.”

Next Steps/Action Plan 2.0
Elyse Powell

TBD…