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NEWS RELEASE

HealthHIV Launches the Opioid Learning Institute

eLearning for healthcare professionals on safe and effective opioid practices

Washington, DC. – December 10, 2019 — HealthHIV announces the launch of the Opioid Learning Institute for providers, prescribers, and other healthcare professionals to become competent in the prevention and treatment of opioid use disorder. The Opioid Learning Institute, supported by DC Health HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, STD, and TB Administration (HAHSTA), offers a comprehensive curriculum comprised of modules on safe and effective opioid prescribing practices, treatment of opioid use disorders, harm reduction strategies, alternative approaches to pain management, and other topics in the prevention and management of opioid use disorders.

Why the Institute is Needed:

In 2017, opioids were involved in 47,600 overdose deaths in the US, 279 of which occurred in the District of Columbia., Despite a reduction of overdose deaths to 213 fatalities in 2018, DC is still experiencing an average of 14 fatal overdoses per month. Residents must remain vigilant concerning the impacts of the epidemic. Since 2004, DC reports over 3,000 Emergency Department visits and over 3,000 naloxone (medication that reverses an opioid overdose) administrations by Emergency Medical Services.1,2 Despite these alarming overdose rates, under 200 DC providers are DATA-waived (a Drug Addiction Treatment Act waiver), allowing them to prescribe Buprenorphine, the gold standard treatment for opioid use disorder. 

What the Institute Offers:

The Opioid Learning Institute offers a community training on overdose prevention, featuring a video that instructs community responders on using nasal naloxone to reverse an opioid overdose. This curriculum offers twelve (12) hours of continuing medical and other professional education credits. These topics enable providers to strengthen services and improve health outcomes. Resources are available on where community members can access free nasal naloxone, current news, and data on opioid use, prevention, care, and treatment. The Institute is expanding its offerings in assisting local service providers with overcoming challenges related to treatment and offering practical strategies for making strides in addressing opioid use disorders in DC.

How to Engage with the Institute:

Visit OpioidHealth.org to access free training and education materials, learn how to access free naloxone, sign up for the OLI listserv, and complete knowledge and skills-based modules.

1 Drug Overdose Deaths. (2019). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/drugoverdose/data/statedeaths.html. Accessed November 1, 2019.
2 District of Columbia Opioids Dashboard. DC Health. https://dchealth.dc.gov/page/opioid-dashboard. Accessed November 1, 2019.

About HealthHIV

HealthHIV is a national non-profit working with organizations, communities, and health care providers to advance effective prevention, care, and support for people living with, or at risk for, HIV and HCV through education and training, technical assistance and capacity building, advocacy, and health services research and evaluation. HealthHIV leads the HealthHCV initiative, the National Center for Health Care Capacity Building, and the National Coalition for LGBTQ Health. Learn more at HealthHIV.org.